Sunday, July 14, 2024

What is Organic?

October 19, 2009 by  
Filed under Green Exchange

organic products

We had a chat with a lawyer-friend the other week and we were surprised when she said, “Organic is beyond food pala.” So we decided to simplify our attempt to answer the frequently asked question, “What is Organic?”

The label “organic” suggests that:

1. Organic produce and other ingredients are grown without the use of

  • pesticides
  • synthetic fertilizers
  • genetically modified organisms (GMOs)

2. Animals that produce meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products do not take antibiotics or growth hormones.

In the US, before a product can be labeled “organic”, a government-approved certifier inspects the farm where the food is grown to make sure the farmer meets USDA organic standards. Even companies that handle and/or process organic food, before it gets to local supermarket or restaurant, must be certified, too.

Since our own goverment-approved certifying body in the Philippines is still in the process of organizing themselves, we at Pinoy Organics use USDA’s standards in identifying organic and non-organic products. USDA has identified 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

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.

So, is your favorite organic product 100% organic, organic or simply made with organic ingredients?

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