Certified Organic Foods and Beauty Products
What is Organic Food?
Organic Food is defined by Law:
"Organic is a labeling term that indicates that the food or other agricultural
product has been produced through approved methods that integrate cultural, biological,
and mechanical practices that foster cycling of resources, promote ecological balance,
and conserve biodiversity. Synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, irradiation,
and genetic engineering may not be used." - USDA National Organic Program
A Non-Toxic Approach to Farming
In non-organic agriculture, chemical fertilizers are applied to promote plant growth,
toxic pesticides are used to control pests, toxic herbicides are applied to reduce weeds,
and genetically-modified crops are grown that tolerate herbicide or produce insect-toxins.
Cattle and chickens are fed antibiotics and growth hormones, and may never see the light of day.
In Organic Agriculture, natural fertilizer, such as manure or compost, is applied to feed soil and plants,
beneficial insects and bacteria are used to control damaging insect populations, and
weeds are controlled by hand-weeding or mulch. Cattle and chickens must be allowed regular access to pasture.
Comparing the Results
Organic fruits and vegetables appear colorful, healthy and large, although overall crop yields are often
less than in conventional non-organic farming. Certified Organic products display a USDA Organic Seal.
Research on the nutritional value of Organic crops is ongoing, and there is considerable debate.
While some studies have shown more flavor and vitamins in organic produce,
other studies did not show significant differences between organic and conventional products.
Soil conservation and polyculture
One reason to eat Organic is that organic farming
practices require significantly less energy resources (and chemicals)
to produce crops, while restoring fertility to the soil.
Permaculture and biodynamic growers take that one
step further, focusing on beneficial polycultures and soil enhancement
that improve the productive capacity of the farm over time, while
conventional producers persist in single-crop moncultures
that are more susceptible to disease and insect infestation, depleting
the soil of nutrient by poisoning beneficial soil nematodes.
Buying Organic means that you reduce your pesticide intake, avoid lab-modified plant DNA,
and preserve small farms. Organic farmers preserve ancient agricultural seed lines, referred to as "Heirlooms."
Organic Beauty Care
Organic health and beauty products are not certified by the USDA, but rather by private certifiers.
Bronner's Magic Soap
Gel Harvest Time for Organic Produce
Organic Hillbilly Tomatoes