Organic Foods

There is a lot of confusion in the marketplace in the use of the word “organic”. To be classified as organic there are many steps a producer must go through.

Making sense of organic labeling can be difficult, and many consumers do not understand the significance of the USDA Organic label. Since October 21, 2002, the following guidelines were established by the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Organic Program (NOP) to assure consumers know the exact organic content of the food they buy.

 

Requirements involve a set of production standards for growing, storage, processing, packaging and shipping that include:

 

  • avoidance of synthetic chemical inputs not on the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances(e.g. fertilizer, pesticides, antibiotics, food additives, etc.), genetically modified organisms, irradiation, and the use of bio solids;
  • use of farmland that has been free from prohibited synthetic chemicals for a number of years (often, three or more);
  • keeping detailed written production and sales records (audit trail);
  • maintaining strict physical separation of organic products from non-certified products;
  • undergoing periodic on-site inspections.

While there are many different certification organizations, USDA Organic is considered the gold standard.

Single-Ingredient Foods
On foods like fruits and vegetables, look for a small sticker version of the USDA Organic label or check the signage in your produce section for this seal.

The word “organic” and the seal may also appear on packages of meat, cartons of milk or eggs, cheese, and other single-ingredient foods.

Multi-Ingredient Foods
Foods such as beverages, snacks, and other processed foods use the following classification system to indicate their use of organic ingredients.

100% Organic—Foods bearing this label are made with 100% organic ingredients* and may display the USDA Organic seal.

Organic—These products contain at least 95–99% organic ingredients (by weight). The remaining ingredients are not available organically but have been approved by the NOP. These products may display the USDA Organic seal.

Made With Organic Ingredients—Food packaging that reads “Made With Organic Ingredients” must contain 70–94% organic ingredients. These products will not bear the USDA Organic seal; instead, they may list up to three ingredients on the front of the packaging.

Other—Products with less than 70% organic ingredients may only list organic ingredients on the information panel of the packaging. These products will not bear the USDA Organic seal.

Keep in mind that even if a producer is certified organic, the use of the USDA Organic label is voluntary. At the same time, not everyone goes through the rigorous process of becoming certified, especially smaller farming operations. When shopping at a farmers’ market, for example, don’t hesitate to ask the vendors how your food was grown.

Buying organic food promotes a less toxic environment for all living things. With only 0.5 percent of crop and pasture land in organic, according to USDA that leaves 99.5 percent of farm acres in the U.S. at risk of exposure to noxious agricultural chemicals.

Our bodies are the environment so supporting organic agriculture doesn’t just benefit your family, it helps all families live less toxic-ally.

11 years ago genetically modified foods were not part of our food supply. Today 30% of our cropland is planted in GMO’s.
USDA Organic is the only de facto seal of reassurance against these and other modern, lab-produced additions to our food supply.

In addition, buying organic supports small local family run farms.

The quality of food we eat repairs and rebuilds our bodies every day. You and your families are worth the cost. Pay now or pay later…. “And what’s less expensive organic food or chemotherapy?” Ha! Remember even adding 30-50% organic over months and years reduces your exposure to chemicals 30-50% which means a huge relief to your liver and other organs in there ability to maintain health and vitality!

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