When you buy fruits and vegetables at the greengrocer or supermarket, do you choose what you want or do you prefer organic produce? There is a difference between the two, and after our discussion, you may decide that organic produce is the best choice for you and your family. Let’s look at the benefits of buying organic.
While at first glance the two appear identical, organic foods must meet “specific criteria” for production, including special growing and processing conditions that apply to foods that can carry the organic label. Chemical pesticides, inorganic fertilizers, manure or sewage sludge cannot be used to grow organic food. Ionizing radiation cannot be used for processing either. Ionizing radiation kills bacteria, which some consider unsafe. Finally, the products cannot be genetically modified.
Originally, these products were grown by small farmers, especially family farms. More recently, however, they have been grown on large farms and are available in most supermarkets, cooperatives and health food stores. In the United States, some European countries and Japan, organic food production is regulated by the government, and in some countries, special certification is required to sell these products.
Natural foods include fresh, unprocessed fruits and vegetables available directly from producers at farmers’ markets, health food stores, supermarkets and street stands. Many products are also only available at certain times of the year. Today, it is easy to find fresh, unprocessed organic eggs, dairy and meat. Organic eggs are usually from free-range hens, not from cages in large egg factories. Organic meat should not come from animals that have been given growth hormones, steroids or antibiotics.
Some organic products are processed and can be found in the specialty sections of most supermarkets, but they are often more expensive than conventional products. Processed organic foods include canned, frozen and prepared foods and snacks.
In fact, processed organic products are only required to contain a certain percentage of organic ingredients. In Australia, for example, products containing at least 95% organic ingredients can be labelled “organic”. However, in other countries, the percentage may be lower. Even then, the use of artificial food additives in non-organic ingredients is prohibited, as are chemical aging methods, genetic modification or irradiation processes. In some cases, organic products must be manufactured using energy-efficient technologies and packaged in recyclable or biodegradable materials.
It is not always easy to determine if a food is truly organic. Check the certificates, look at the source, and do some research to make the right choice. Sometimes you have to buy directly from the producer to be sure it’s organic. However, these days, organic foods can be identified by government labels that say they are “certified organic foods”.
Sara has completed her education in marketing and started her career as a digital marketer. She is a content writer by profession. And she would love to add multiple things to her knowledge that she can add to her writing style. She writes about the organic shop.