Just 3 of the dozens of different variances in title you see on the label of your food products today. You walk into any store today, you’ve got 3-15 different varieties of the “same” product side by side. Without any knowledge of these products the only difference to the naked eye is…. wait for it….. price. Right?
I’m not gonna sit here and tell you today which one to use or which one is better for you or why In the heck you should buy a $8 gallon of organic milk over the $1.80 gallon of milk from Wal-Mart, but I can at least tell you the difference.
(*Disclaimer* if you asked me in person, yes, I would most definitely tell you which one I think is better for you to purchase and consume and if you disagree, would throw hands if need be.... that was a joke... maybe)
Conventional Food Products
High volume at low cost is the name of the game here. The focus in the conventional food market is to produce large quantities at the lowest possible cost. Which includes using chemical pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, chemical fertilizers, and genetically modified seeds to get the most bang for the buck. Vegetables, fruits, nuts, milk, meat, etc. All these products and their producers have their different versions of what conventional is to them, but it all consists of high volume at low cost.
All-Natural Food Products
This name was always deceiving to me. When I thought all-natural I expected that it was the same thing as organic. Nope. All-natural simply means that the foods are minimally processed and free of any synthetic preservatives, growth hormones, antibiotics, hydrogenated oils, stabilizers and emulsifiers. With the exception of meat and poultry products, there is no government certification needed to be able to label a food product all-natural. As for the meat and poultry products they “must be minimally processed in a method that does not fundamentally alter the raw product.”
Organic Food Products
Organic food is exactly what it sounds like. Organic meaning: not produced in anyway using chemical fertilizers, antibiotics, synthetic preservatives, and on and on. All organic producers must be certified as an organic facility by the USDA and the certification must be upheld every year. Animals that are certified organic must come from mothers who were also a certified organic animal. There are also certain procedures that can be followed to convert animals from conventional to organic animals at later stages in life, but I will leave the explanation of the for another day. All animals must be fed organic crops off of organic land that can not be sprayed with pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers for a minimum of 3 years. All organic crops to be sold for consumer consumption must follow these rules as well. No genetically modified organisms may be fed to an organic animal as well as no genetically modified seeds may be used in the planting of organic crops. The product to be certified must be documented from birth to purchaser for traceability and verification.
Like I said before, I’m not here to tell you which is best for you in your family, but knowledge is power and when it comes to what you put into your body, a little knowledge about it can’t hurt.