How to know if your produce is really organic!?!
Beyond just glancing at a sign written above the pile of apples, oranges or tomatoes, there are some tricks to know so that you really understand what is in, or or used to make your foods - even whole foods. Let's talk numbers!
Organic Produce: should be a 5 digit number that begins with a 9 OR comes from a local farmer who does not use pesticides. Example: my dad has two large gardens, which are NOT USDA organic certified. However - they are organic because he does not use a single chemical in the soil or topically. One of the requirements is that the soil must be free from pesticides for at least 3 years preceeding growth.
Conventional Produce: a 4 digit number that begins with either a 3 or a 4. C'mon all my Hy-Vee workers, doesn't everyone know by heart the PLU code for bananas?!? I still do to this day: conventional bananas are #4011.
Genetically Modified Items: will have a 5 digit number that begins with an 8
The concept of organic food is that good, nutrient dense food is grown up through nutrient dense, rich soil. You cannot have one without the other. Therefore you cannot have a healthy internal body that is full of nutrients to feed your cells without consuming nutrient dense foods.
Genetically Modified foods are not the same as organic either. If something is labeled USDA Organic, it is also GMO-Free. However the reverse is not true. GMO containing foods still may contain pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics, and more. When something is labeled organic, it means it must be at least 95% organic and free of any chemicals, residues, etc. So it is possible that up to 5% of the product could contain non-organic ingredients, however of that 5%, they should not be genetically modified.
See how this is getting a little tricky?
The best possible way for us to know what is in our food, is to buy food that we know is safe. The more you can put your food dollars toward Organic, the healthier you will be and the bigger the message you will give the government to stop hiding things on our food labels.
Want even more info on this? Go to the Environmental Working Group for lots of details!