What's in a Name?

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Organic, sustainable, all natural, farm-raised—having trouble deciphering the latest buzzwords in the food world?


You’re not alone.

Sustainable foods are certainly a hot topic, but deciphering the new vernacular is a common issue among shoppers.

Federally regulated since 2002, the term “organic” means food grown using methods that foster the health and harmony of the ecosystem, including the people and animals living in it. “Natural” and “sustainable” have no federally regulated definitions for most products.

Organic food is produced with:

  • No synthetic pesticides, herbicides or fumigants
  • No fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients or sewage sludge
  • No genetically modified organisms (GMOs)
  • No irradiation
  • No hormones, antibiotics, artificial ingredients or trans fats

For many, the word “organic” means produce like apples, potatoes and oranges. But you can find organic varieties of nearly every kind of food.

From milk to meats, choosing organic items helps keep potentially dangerous chemicals out of our bodies and helps protect the environment.

Photo courtesy of Earthbound Farm

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