Organic standards...nothing artificial.
Current USDA regulations allow food products that contain 95-100% certified organic ingredients to use the USDA Organic seal.  These regulations:

Prohibit the use of chemical fertilizers, various synthetic substances, irradiation, sewage sludge, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in organic production.

Prohibit antibiotic and synthetic hormone use in organic meat and poultry.

Require 100% organic feed for organic livestock.

When the product is labeled “100% organic,” “organic,” or just “made with organic ingredients,” then even the non-organic ingredients cannot be produced from GMOs. For example, products labeled as “made with organic ingredients” only require 70% of the ingredients to be organic, but 100% must be non-GMO.

Why buy Organic?
It’s about safety for both the environment . . . and for you. Concerns about “health, their community, and the environment inspire approximately three million consumers to buy organic foods in the United States.” *

While synthetic pesticides used in conventional farming may initially hit their targets, over time they become less effective, and pest populations can develop resistance to these chemicals. What follows, is a cycle of increased pesticide applications without increased yields, and the development of even more powerful pesticides that run ahead of the EPA's ability to study and regulate their use.

Organic pest control methods and the promotion of organically built soils that produce resilient plants with their own natural defenses against insects, fungus and disease, is a safer path. If you add the mounting evidence of widespread damage to and contamination of food, water, soil, and air, along with diminished wildlife, and soil erosion, it’s easy to see why it’s so important to buy food displaying the USDA Organic seal.

Organic dairy farmers and ranchers use pure water, quality feed, fresh air, and healthy pastures, to make sure their organically raised animals grow at their own natural pace, without artificial growth hormones.  The “use of antibiotics, synthetic hormones, and genetically modified organisms to intensify production in conventional agriculture practices which give rise to serious health questions," ** are excluded from their operations.

Buying locally...and supporting community?
A commitment to choosing locally produced foods is also at the heart of the organic movement. In addition to fresher foods and reduced fossil fuel consumption, the dollars you spend at a farmer’s are much more likely to find their way back into your community.  Local growers thrive and you thrive on more nutritious, and better tasting food!

Using the Non-GMO Shopping Guide makes it easy to find Organic (non-GMO) products in your store?
When you use the online or printed version of the Non-GMO Shopping Guide when you shop, you are a part of the next big consumer tidal wave rising to protect our nation’s food supply. Your purchasing power, combined with the purchasing power of the tens of millions of other health-conscious shoppers has a powerful and positive influence in shaping our choices in the consumer marketplace.

                        * from Organic Valley Family of Farms website
                              ** from Organic Valley Family of Farms website

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