Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Is the word “Organic” losing it’s meaning?

I recently read in an issue of Mother Earth News magazine a great quote. “Every time you buy organic, you’re persuading more farmers to grow organic.” This quote goes well along with my lines of thinking. I am a true believer of not buying a product or hiring someone to perform a service from a business if that product or service does not meet my expectations for what I am paying.

In this case that product is freshly grown fruits or veggies. I grow a lot of my own food, but lack the space to grow it all. So, for the items that I am unable to grow in abundance I will search out quality farms in my area, that do not use chemical pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. I am willing to pay a little more because I am getting quality food, great customer service and get what I am paying for.

What I have also noticed in my search for local farms, is the term organic being thrown around a lot. The question I was mulling over, is that term overused? Has it become nothing more than a marketing gimic?

My dad, and grandfather before him, practiced organic methods when tending to their gardens. No use of pesticides or synthetic fertilizers, heck they did not even use gas powered tools. Everything was done with a little elbow grease and plenty of sweat. They each kept compost piles, and since my dad was (and still is) a big fisherman, all of the fish waste went into his garden beds. Everything was natural.

But one thing was common, you never heard them use the word organic. If you asked them if they practiced organic methods, they probably would be the first to tell you they have no idea of what you are talking about. They used safe, healthy methods to grow their food, not because they wanted to be “organic”, but because they wanted to put good food on the table.

In order for someone to use the word “organic” they must meet some criteria as outlined by the USDA. You can read up on what it takes to become certified organic on the USDA website.

Me personally, I think the word “organic” is quickly a word that is being overused. But what do you think? I understand the importance of needing to certify items to be organic, but do you think “organic” is being overused?

No comments:

Post a Comment