The USDA mission started as nutrition for pioneers, changed to regulation and welfare

The USDA mission of nutrition from pioneer to modern days has undergone many transformations.

Created in the late 1800s, the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture distributed seeds appropriate to the many and varied climatic conditions of the vast and sprawling United States.

But of course about half the U.S. population in those days were involved in agriculture to some degree.

Today, only about 2 percent of the U.S. population is involved in agriculture. And the USDA mission of nutrition from pioneer to modern days has altered drastically.

The USDA data from 1950 to 1999 found substantial declines of vitamins and minerals in 43 vegetables and fruits, according to a landmark study by Donald Davis and a team of researchers from the University of Texas (UT).

Other studies in the British Food Journal revealed that calcium content had dropped 27 percent, iron 37 percent, potassium 14 percent and vitamin A, 21 percent.

One study found that it would take 8 oranges today to equal the same amount of phytonutrients to equal one orange of many decades ago.

The inclusive study was published in the Journal of American Nutrition in 2004.

Since that time, it appears that the USDA does not involve itself with the nutrient content of crops grown and ‘landmark’ studies, maybe because the nutrient depletion is too scary.

Instead, 73 percent of USDA outlays go to food and nutrition assistance programs, such as ‘Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, (SNAP, aka food stamps, etc.), marketing and regulation programs, research, rural development programs, conservation and foreign agricultural service programs.

Today the U.S. has over 31,000 food and beverage manufacturers across the country. We have enormous factory and corporate-dominated farms, depleted soil, a river of pesticides, GMO crops and chemical fertilizers to mask the loss of soil microorganisms that once protected our health and vitality.

The new  form of submission to the new realities has subverted the USDA mission of nutrition from pioneer to modern days to taking care of the damage caused by modern corporate farming.

If  USDA officials were really serving the interests of the people, they would be promoting and assisting organic and natural ways of providing crops that provided the maximum nutrient benefit.

Instead they are providing taxpayer money to support some of the richest corporate people in the world as they grow and manufacture nutrient-deficient food.

Davis in the turn of the 21st century left us with a significant warning. Refined sugars and processed oils and fats, white flour and rice offer us tasty food with huge reductions in nutrients that give us obesity but not health.

Yet, these foods currently constitute HALF the calories consumed by Americans, eclipsing all the mineral and vitamins seen in crop declines.

The bottom line: Eat lots of fruits and vegetables prepared from scratch, organic preferably but conventional if not possible. Unprocessed fruits and vegetables are still our best bet, along with reputable whole food natural supplements that help fill the nutritional gap.

The USDA mission was once to work with nature. Today it is to work with international corporations more interested in profits than in health.

The transformation of USDA mission of nutrition from pioneer to modern days seems to be more apologetic treatment than prevention.

Sources: USDA, ScientificAmerican.com, PreventDisease.com, GeneticLiteracyProject.org