More Organic!By Nonna Joann • Jul 12th, 2012 • Category: Nonna's Nutrition News & Views
You Vote with Your Dollar
Josh is having fun at the farmers’ market near his home.
Organic foods are outpacing traditional grocery sales! People are purchasing more organic foods and the stores are wising up. When you purchase organic, not only do you get pesticide-free food, but GMO-free food. There is still a price differential, but the more organic sales increase, the more the price will fall.
Of course, once you factor in illness and the cost of seeing a physician and medicine, then highly processed and conventionally grown foods cost a whole lot more! Junk food multiplies the negative impact processed foods have on your body. Sugar is an inflammatory which is a major contributor to all illness (including allergies, cancer, heart disease and diabetes).
The USDA National Organic Program (NOP) defines organic as follows:
Organic food is produced by farmers who emphasize the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations. Organic meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products come from animals that are given no antibiotics or growth hormones. Organic food is produced without using most conventional pesticides; fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients or sewage sludge; bioengineering; or ionizing radiation. Before a product can be labeled “organic,” a Government-approved certifier inspects the farm where the food is grown to make sure the farmer is following all the rules necessary to meet USDA organic standards. Companies that handle or process organic food before it gets to your local supermarket or restaurant must be certified, too.
Major food chains offer organic foods and some even provide organic sections. An organic section amounts to a store within a store. No need to read labels or ingredients in these sections. If you buy here, everything is organic, from the snacks to the frozen veggie pizzas.
That touches on my personal pet peeve. I get frustrated when I’m in a whole food store and they stock products which are NOT organic. I hate spending time reading each and every label. I’m a label reader, but it’s nice to know that when you are in a section or store, all the food is organic. That’s why I skip Sunflower/Sprouts. They advertise that they offer”natural foods” and supplements. “Natural” means nothing. Even though “natural” is in this store’s name, Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers, carries only certified organic products and naturally raised meats. They take the guesswork out of grocery shopping.
I’m also a big Costco fan, because they offer lots and lots of organic foods. You have to be alert when looking for organic products in Costco, because they are constantly changing and they love to move things around the store. And everything is mixed together. There is no organic section. Because of demand, they are offering more and more organic products! You’ll want to check out My Unofficial Costco Organic Foods List: Click Here.
Know What “Organic” On The Label Means
The USDA has identified for three categories of labeling organic products:
(1) 100% Organic: Made with 100% organic ingredients
(2) Organic: Made with at least 95% organic ingredients
(3) Made With Organic Ingredients: Made with a minimum of 70% organic ingredients with strict restrictions on the remaining 30% including no GMOs (genetically modified organisms)
(4) Products with less than 70% organic ingredients may list organically produced ingredients on the side panel of the package, but may not make any organic claims on the front of the package.
Now if only there were organic restaurants in my area!
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