What does Organic mean?
By now you’ve probably got the point that here at Crazy Jack we love organic! So much so, we’ll passionately (and sometimes annoyingly!) talk about it with friends and family. We’ll go in to great detail about the origins of our products, how their look can vary from non-organic products and how they taste great!
However, we’re often left with a perplexed face that asks the question “that all sounds great but what does organic mean?” The truth is, despite the number of organic products lining our shelves in the supermarket, there simply isn’t enough information for consumers to understand fully what they’re purchasing when they buy an organic product. Luckily we’re on hand to help.
Organic means fewer pesticides
First off, organic relies on utilising mother nature to grow crops and fight off weeds. This reliance on mother nature requires fewer pesticides to be used than with non-organic products.
The Soil Association is the UK’s leading membership charity campaigning for healthy, humane and sustainable food, farming and land use. They explain “almost 300 pesticides can be routinely used in non-organic farming, compared with just 20 permitted for organic farming”. These are derived from natural ingredients and can only be used under very restricted circumstances.
What’s more no herbicides (weed killers) that are routinely used in non-organic farming, such as Glyphosate are allowed in organic farming.
Organic means no GM crops
So what does organic mean when considering GM? GM stands for Genetically Modified. These farming methods are used in non-organic farming to alter the natural properties of crops, to allow them to produce larger yields and last for longer periods of time.
The Soil Association report “Genetically Modified promised higher yields and improved nutritional value, but have failed to produce even one commercially viable example.
Pest-resistance, blight-resistance, and tolerance of drought, flood, and salinity – all of these traits can be produced far more quickly and cost-effectively through non-GM breeding practises; GM products don’t even come close.”
It was believed that the use of these products would lead to a decrease in the number of pesticides used in non-organic farming, however the Soil Association explain that the truth has proven to be the opposite of this.
Organic farms produce their crops without the need for GM.
Organic means looking after our planet
The planet as a resource is often used for our own means without considering how future generations will need to utilise this too. Organic can go some way to safeguarding it’s future.
Combating Climate Change
When farming their land, organic farmers select crops that are naturally resistant to particular pests and diseases. This reduces disease problems and the need for chemicals to be used on the land.
The effort that goes in to crop rotations not only helps to build fertility in the soil but also helps breaks cycles of pests and disease.
Protecting the Soil
Once soil is permanently damaged it can no longer be used for farming. There are examples of farms that are now permanently used for events due to their lack of fertility, which is bad for the farmer and bad for us.
The Soil Association report “less than one sixth of the land on Earth is suitable for growing crops. But we’ve taken our soil for granted, and now one third of the world’s arable soils are degraded – and 75% of that is severely degraded”.
Organic farming works to enhance soil life, natural soil fertility and water quality. This healthy fertile soil can then be used to grow a mixture of crops, without damaging the lands sustainability.
Organic means nutritionally different
What does organic mean when considering nutritional differences? A popular debate between foodies, it’s often put forward that organic is better for you. Now there is research being conducted that begins to show some of the nutritional differences between organic and non-organic.
We think this is pretty groundbreaking. So not only is organic super tasty, the crops it’s made from are nutritionally better for you too!
Organic means traceable from field to fork
It’s becoming more prevalent in society today, that we as consumers want to know what food manufacturers are adding to our food. Fair enough, right?
Organic food is traceable from field to fork, meaning you’ll always know what’s in your food. Producing organic isn’t the easiest thing in the world and has strict rules to be adhered to! These are in turn enforced by inspections and certification. All the products in our range are certified by the Soil Association.
So when somebody asks what does organic mean, you now know. Better still, why not go ahead and try it. You can find a number of recipes using organic ingredients in our recipe book here.
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