Organic Food - What Is It and Where to Start

Photo Credit: Chief Wellbeing Officer, Jennifer Osborne - Bayleaf Wellness

From food to cosmetics, as demand for organic grows, so do the options on our supermarket and store shelves. But why would we pick organic options over conventional brands? Whether it is for your health or for the environment the reasons to choose organic are abundant.

So, what is organic food? Organic farming produces nutrient rich food without the toxic pesticides, fertilizers and added hormones that we consume through conventionally farmed products, often without us even knowing! For a product to be classified as organic it needs to be GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) and synthetic/ chemical free, sustainable to grow, fish and manufacture as well as biodiversity friendly, fair trade, not tested on animals and all animals must be free range at all times as well as fed organic feed.

Often organic produce is richer in nutrients as it has been grown until fully ripe in healthy soil or fed organic feed and has not travelled far from farm to table, so it is still fresh when it ends up on your plate at home.

What makes organic a healthier option?

By not allowing growers to use chemicals and other mass farming processes and products, crops must be strong to survive. This means when you eat organic produce you are eating a stronger and healthier plant foods because they have not been artificially grown and supported. It goes without saying that aside from healthier produce you avoid eating chemicals as well.

How do I know if what I am buying is really organic? In Australia there are 6 Certification bodies that test and guarantee that a product is genuinely organic. If a brand or product has met the requirements, then the certification logo will be on the label. This makes it easy for us to make choices when there are often words like ‘organic’, ‘pure’, ‘green’ and ‘natural’ used on packaging to persuade us that they are a healthy choice, even though they might not be.

Organic is expensive!

Many people think that eating organic is expensive, which in some cases can be true, but by cutting back on pro