Guide to Organic Foods

Article written by Çéllan

Organic foods have become popular over the last few years.  However, you may find the whole navigation process of the organic benefits, labels and claims to be a bit confusing.  The term organic describes the method that in which agricultural products are grown and processed.  There are certain requirements that must be adhered to in order for certain foods to be called organic.  The crops have to be planted in soil that is safe, with no modifications and needs to be completely separated from conventional crops.


Farmers cannot use petroleum based fertilizers, synthetic pesticides, bioengineered genes and sewage sludge-based fertilizers.  In order for livestock to be considered organic, they need to have outside access, be fed organic feed and cannot be given growth hormones, antibiotics or any type of animal-by-products.


There are several benefits to consuming organic foods.  Organic produce has fewer pesticides than conventional agriculture.  Conventional agriculture is often sprayed with chemicals such as herbicides, insecticides and fungicides.  These chemicals leave behind residue on the produce as well as inside.


Organic foods are much fresher than conventional foods.  This is because conventional foods often have preservatives that make the food last longer.  Organic foods many times are planted on small farms and sold nearby.


There are some conventional fruits and vegetables that have levels of pesticides therefore are better bought organically.  These include apples, carrots, cherries, lettuce, peaches and strawberries.


Produce such as cabbage, mango, onions, sweat peas, tomatoes and watermelon have low levels of pesticides.


It is important to look for labels that state that the food is USDA certified organic.  The labels will say 100% Organic, Organic or Made with Organic Ingredients.

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