What is organic food?

organic-foodOrganic food may confuse the consumers, whether it’s healthier, more nutritious, if it’s good for babies, what the labels mean, why it’s more expensive, and many other doubts. Hopefully Plain Greens Natural Market will relieve you of any doubts and inform you about all the organic food related topics. This blog is inspired by the organic trend and all its implications. Before entering in the subject, it’s important to define: What is organic food?

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Organic Program 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”.

According to the research Organic Food Industry Profile: United States. (2012)

  • The U.S. accounts for 43.5% of the global organic food market value.
  • In 2011 the United States organic food market value was $29,223.8 million.

The organic food market has grown substantially over the last years because consumers are more aware and educated about all of the benefits these products are to their body as well for the environment.

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Among the benefits of organic food we can mention:

  • Organic products meet strict standard:  assurance that the products are grown and handled with required standards.
  • Organic food is more nutritional than its non-organic food.
  • Organic produce reduce health risk: the chemicals and pesticides which are used in conventional agriculture are out of the food we eat. Those chemical are associate to the development of cancer and the farmers are not expose to the chemicals and pesticides.
  • Organic farming is better for the environment: it reduce pollution and soil erosion, increase soil fertility and conservation of water.
  • Organic food taste better and is fresher than conventional food: it doesn’t contain preservatives that makes the food last longer.
  • Organically raised animal are not given antibiotics: in conventional meat production it creates an antibiotic-resistant bacteria, that when humans get sick it makes them less responsive to antibiotic treatment. Not feeding animal byproducts to other animals reduces the risk of mad cow disease (BSE).
  • Every food category has an organic alternative. And non-food agricultural products are being grown organically.
  • Organic farming is the main source of survival for the rural community.
  • Almost 70% of all the processed foods contain genetic modified ingredients, that’s why consuming organic is so important.
  • Organic fruits and vegetables are rich of antioxidants which impart multiple health benefits, including the prevention of many cancers.

Are you ready to start incorporating organic food in your daily diet?! The Plain Greens movement will help you view organic food in a whole different light.

What other benefits or positive features of organic foods are you aware of?

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