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T   847-763-0218, Ext. 223
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Pearl Siegel

  
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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Organic Certification FAQs

ON & IC.....Answering Your Questions

What does “organic” mean?

  • Organic ingredients are grown without the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms or ionizing radiation.
  • Organic foods are grown and processed in an environmentally sustainable way, helping to restore and protect the health of the soil, and thus the environment.
  • The National Organic Program Standards were created to assure the public that the organic foods they purchase are grown, processed and certified in accordance with these standards.

What does “certified organic” mean and why is it important?

  • “Certified Organic” means that a certifier accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has verified that products, crops, and/or livestock labeled as “organic” meet strictly defined organic standards established by the USDA.
  • Organic certification provides for product differentiation from main stream consumer products, ensures a products value, protects consumers from fraud, and assures organic integrity from the soil to a finished product by requiring organic certification of all processes along the way.

What label can I use on my products?

  • 100% Organic - Must contain all organic ingredients including processing aids, USDA seal is allowed, and the certifying agent must be listed on the label.
  • Organic – Must contain at least 95% organic ingredients with the remaining 5% required to be on the USDA non-organic allowed ingredient list. All agricultural ingredients must be organic unless not available. The USDA seal is allowed and the certifying agent must be listed on the label.
  • Made with Organic Ingredients – Must contain at least 70% organic ingredients with the remaining 30% to be of non-organic allowed ingredients (vitamins, citric acid, baking powder, etc.) or non-organic agricultural ingredients. The USDA seal is not allowed to be used and the certifying agent must be listed on the label.
  • Products with less than 70% organic ingredients – Can contain any level of organic ingredients that can only be listed on the ingredient panel with no restrictions on the remaining non-organic ingredients. The USDA seal may not be used and no certification claims can be made.
  
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