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USDA Organic - What Does it Really Mean?

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New year’s resolution? Starting healthy this January isn’t just about what you eat. What you put on your skin is equally as important. This is why opting for the highest quality and most natural organic products is key to mind-body health.

You may have seen the term ‘USDA Organic’ printed on dozens of labels and products. But what does USDA Organic really mean?

What does organic mean?

Products that are certified organic often boast their certification in the form of a printed stamp on labels and packaging. This is in order to help customers make informed choices when purchasing products. But what is organic?

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Organically produced items are created using strict federal guidelines - which include restricting the use of artificial pesticides, soil quality, animal raising practices and much more. These guidelines are set to ensure that the products are produced in the most sustainable and natural way - to ensure that you obtain the highest quality products without costing the environment.

While some products may claim they are organic, you must look out for a USDA certified organic stamp to ensure that it passes all checks. Some products are often falsely identified as organic - as they do not match all the requirements needed to receive a certification.

Thus, a certified organic logo is there to help you - giving you the seal of approval you need to make informed and healthy choices without a fuss.

About USDA:

The USDA, or United States Department of Agriculture, is a federal department that provides leadership on food, agriculture, nutrition, and more. It is comprised of over 29 agencies across the country.

One of the USDA’s roles involves organic certification via standards set out by their extensive research and guidance. This is to ensure that organic products are correctly and legally certified in the correct manner to protect consumers.

What is USDA Organic?

USDA Organic foods are grown or processed under very strict rules and guidelines. They do not allow the use of pesticides, weed control, additives or the use of synthetic processes. They can only rely on natural, botanical or biological farming practices to produce goods.

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Organic certifications can be valid on everything from vegetables and fruit, to meat and beauty products. Products that contain organic ingredients but are only 70% organic cannot have the USDA-accredited certification. Thus, to get the USDA organic seal, manufacturers and farmers must pass a variety of rigorous criteria to meet the standards necessary for certification.

Organic also prohibits the use of genetically modified organisms and engineering. Additionally, they do not contain artificial colors, preservatives and flavors. It’s an A to Z certification that ensures everything follows organic practices from farm to final product.

But why is organic so important? Is it worth switching to organic even if it is more expensive?

Why buy certified organic?

Organic isn’t just a title - there are many benefits to making the switch. Here are just some of the reasons why organic is better for you and the environment:

  • Sustainable and eco-friendly: While there are many ways you can choose sustainable products, you can reduce your carbon footprint by buying organic. Organic farmland uses up to 40-50% lower emissions than standard practices. This means soil stays healthier and can store carbon long-term. It also reduces pollution to land and water that is often caused by artificial fertilisers. Synthetic nitrogen fertilisers are incredibly damaging - causing up to 300 times more damage to the atmosphere than carbon dioxide.
  • Better welfare for animals: Supporting nature and wildlife, organic practices reduce the risk of damaging the ecosystem and affecting animals. Artificial fertilisers can leak into oceans, killing fish and aquatic life. By following organic practices, it ensures animals can roam and live freely without the risk of extinction.
  • Better for you: Organic ensures that you are not eating or using any products that contain artificial preservatives, additives or genetically modified ingredients. Organically produced products are often purer, are higher in quality and are as natural as possible - avoiding any toxic side effects to you and your family.

Conclusion

Choosing organic is a smart choice for you and your planet - and it’s not just about the food you eat. By selecting skincare and beauty products with a USDA certified seal, you can ensure that you are getting the best quality product that has been strictly grown under eco-friendly farming practices.

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