The Meaning of the USDA Organic Label

USDA Organic Label pic
USDA Organic Label
Image: ams.usda.gov

Stacy Stine Cary has several years of experience as a business administrator and real estate professional. Also a mentor at the startup accelerator Tech Wildcatters, Stacy Stine Cary enjoys a healthy, holistic lifestyle and often cooks with organic food.

In the United States, the Department of Agriculture is responsible for certifying foods as organic. To obtain this certification, farms and food handlers must be inspected annually and document their processes to ensure they meet guidelines in areas such soil quality, use of additives, and animal treatment.

Soil quality. No prohibited substances can be applied three years before harvest.

Additives. Livestock must be fed organic feed and not be given antibiotics or hormone supplements. Additionally, processed organic foods cannot contain artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, or other non-organic ingredients (although there are some exceptions to this rule).

Animal Treatment. Living conditions for livestock must mirror the animal’s natural environment, such as allowing grazing and full access to open pastures.

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