Organic Food 101

Organic Food 101

Grocery shopping can be a difficult task at best. We try to pick out the healthiest, most nutritious foods available at the best price possible. Now we have to decipher all of the latest lingo as we stroll down aisle after aisle reading one label after another. Do we choose natural or is organic best? Exactly what does certified organic mean? The following guide is intended to clear things up so you can make the best choices for you and your family.

*Organic fruits and vegetables are grown without the use of pesticides. Farmers accomplish this by rotating crops and by using natural pesticides. For produce to be labeled organic, they must be grown in soil that has not been treated with toxic pesticides for at least three years.

*When purchasing organic dairy and meat products, you are assured that the animals were fed organic feed only and that no hormones or antibiotics were used.

*The term natural or all natural may be seen on everything from pasta sauce to potato chips. This usually indicates that the food item you’re placing in your cart has few or no additives.

*Purchasing an item that is labeled as certified organic means that the company who produced the food item has been inspected by an outside agency to ensure that the foods consumers purchase are legitimately organic.

For those taking their first baby steps in this new world of “green”, “earth friendly” and “organic” will probably find the above information sufficient. If you’re more knowledgeable than most regarding all things organic, then you will probably enjoy sinking your teeth into more detailed information. The USDA’s site has more detailed information on organic certification and more specifics on labeling. You’re just a click away from learning even more.

http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/!ut/p/_s.7_0_A/7_0_1OB?parentnav=COOPERATIVES&navid=ORGANIC_CERTIFICATIO&navtype=RT