What is Organic?

100% Consumer and Labeling FAQ’s from the Oregon Tilth

What is organic?
(see more at the Oregon Tilth’s website page “What is Organic?”)

“Organic refers not only to the food itself, but also to how it is produced and processed. Organic food production is based on a system of farming that mimics natural ecosystems and maintains and replenishes the fertility and nutrients of the soil. Organic Production integrates cultural, biological and mechanical practices that foster cycling of resources, promote ecological balance and conserve biodiversity. Organic foods are produced without the use of genetically modified organisms and irradiation. Processed organic foods are handled carefully to maintain the integrity of organic ingredients going into the products.”

The term “organic” has been tossed around a lot in the media and advertising and not all product labeled “organic” is the same.

The Oregon Tilth defines four terms:

  • 100% Organic
  • Organic
  • Made with Organic Ingredients
  • Products with less than 70% Organic Ingredients