Wednesday May 30, 2018
Natural Vs. Organic and Certified Organic vs. Non-GMO
Many years ago, I was attending a trade show on the mainland for our organic Noni products when someone asked our group what the word "natural" meant to us. It was interesting listening to others in my booth with their interpretation of “natural”. When it came my turn, my response was that it means absolutely nothing when dealing with food, drugs or health products. The word “natural” is used by many companies to impress you but in reality, there are no regulations concerning growing or producing products in a natural manner. My advice: buyers should beware when something is advertised as “all natural”.
However, certified organic with the USDA insignia means a lot. I highly recommend visiting The Cornucopia Institute's website (https://www.cornucopia.org/). They're watchdogs for organic practices and regulations, and post many, many good articles and updates on organics and the importance of organic practices.
Their recent newsletter has a section on Certified Organic and Non-GMO. Here is a portion as food for thought:
"What’s more important, looking for the organic seal or the non-GMO verified logo?
“By definition, GMOs are strictly prohibited in organic farming and food production. Perhaps even more importantly, organic farmers do not use synthetic pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, or fertilizers to grow crops or feed, and they cannot administer antibiotics, growth hormones, and many other banned drugs to livestock. They are mandated to improve soil health and allow their livestock outdoor access, resulting not only in safer food, but food of superior nutritional quality.
Non-GMO products are only verified not to contain genetically modified (GMO) ingredients. Non-GMO farmers do use synthetic agrochemicals and petrochemical-based fertilizers. They are not required to allow their livestock access to the outdoors or pasture, and are not restricted from administering a myriad of pharmaceuticals prohibited from use in organics.”
I've been an organic farmer for over 40 years, way before the certification process even began. For my family, organic practices on the Noni Farm are a way of life. We work with nature and all of its living organisms in the soil and in the plants. Healthy soil grows healthy trees and more potent Noni!