How Is Organic Food Defined?
It used to be that all food that was grown was organic. But times have changed and now pesticides are regularly used on crops. The public’s eye has been turned to organic foods now more than ever. As everyone tries to eat healthier, organic foods seem like a good place to start.
Many farmers’ markets will bring produce to sell that is fresh from their farm. But can they call their vegetables and fruits organic? What are the requirements?
Government Regulations of Organic Food
Organic food is actually under strict regulations by the U.S. government. Not just any food can be called organic. And that’s a good thing. Because there are such high standards, growers are required to provide evidence that they fall under the category of an organic growing farm.
Organically grown foods cannot contain any pesticides or chemicals or have any genetically modified organisms in them. There is also a requirement that they have no chemical food additives and that they be processed all naturally.
If any meats are to be graded organic, the farm they are raised on has to show that they were allowed to have access to free spaces to graze as well as be completely hormone and antibiotic-free.
The term organic, as it related to farming, is not new. It’s been used since the 1940s when the first green living movements were started in response to increased altering of food as it was processed.
There are other countries that do promote organic foods besides the United States. Australia, Canada, India, and Japan are among the top contributors to organic farming.
The Cost of Eating Organic
Of course, organic foods aim to create healthier alternatives to genetically modified foods. They also aim to reduce the amount of pesticides used on the land in farming. Who wouldn’t want to eat better if they could?
The reality is that many people can’t afford to buy all organic food even if they want to. The costs associated with organic farming are in some cases passed on to the consumer. So the price of an organic tomato will most times be much higher than that of a genetically modified tomato that has had pesticides used on it. It’s a sad fact. Until organic foods can be grown less expensively, consumers will have to pay the upscale price to have healthier vegetables and fruits.
There is always the option for consumers to grow their own vegetables. It’s once again become fashionable to have your own vegetable and herb garden.
Many cities are implementing rooftop gardens and encouraging school children to get involved in growing the plants. The produce is then a group of organic fruit gifts to local schools so lunches can include fresh, organic produce.
Health Concerns & Choosing Organic
As health concerns are on the rise, more and more people are turning to organic foods for a healthier way of life. If at all possible, people are choosing to buy organic when it comes to fruits, vegetables, and meats.
Look for the organic seal on foods in grocery stores. You may have to hunt a little, but most of the big grocery stores now have many organically grown products. You can also find organic cosmetics and beauty products as well.
The organic movement is here to stay. Get involved and see the taste difference when you bite into an organically grown fruit or vegetable.
Did you know that we offer organic fruit gift baskets? They're a favorite among our healthy shoppers.