Do organic farmers use toxic chemicals?

No. By law, organic farmers can’t use most toxic pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. Instead, they raise healthy crops and livestock using time-tested methods that protect the environment.

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Are there genetically engineered (GE) ingredients in organics?

No. GE ingredients aren’t allowed in organic products. This means a farmer can’t use GE seeds to grow crops, and organic livestock can’t eat GE feed.

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Why does organic cost more?

The truth of the matter is that organic food doesn’t always cost more. Some items, such as coffee, cereal, bread, and even hamburger, may cost the same or even less than their conventional counterparts. And, as the demand for organics continues to grow, the cost will continue to come down. When the cost is higher, consider these facts:

• Organic farmers don’t receive federal subsidies like conventional farmers do. Therefore, the price of organic food reflects the true cost of growing.

• The price of conventional food does not reflect the cost of environmental cleanups that we pay for through our tax dollars.

• Organic farming is more labor and management intensive.

• Organic farms are usually smaller than conventional farms and so do not benefit from the economies of scale that larger growers get.

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What does USDA Organic seal on a product mean?

The USDA Organic seal assures consumers of the quality and integrity of organic products. Organic-certified operations must have an organic system plan and records that verify compliance with that plan. Operators are inspected annually in addition there are random checks to assure standards are being met.

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What does “organic” mean?

Simply stated, organic produce and other ingredients are grown without the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms, or ionizing radiation. Animals that produce meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products do not take antibiotics or growth hormones.

The USDA National Organic Program (NOP) defines organic as follows:

Organic food is produced by farmers who emphasize the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations. 

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