Food terminology is a must when you are purchasing food to be an effective, healthy shopper! There are some standard food terms that are helpful to understand. Knowing them will allow you to develop the healthy diet habit of purchasing organic food from great farms. It is a wonderful Lifestyle Solution to join a local CSA and enjoy fresh produce for the farm season!
Certified Naturally Grown is an alternative certification program created for small scale organic farmers. This is a non-profit organization. Farmers are expected to follow USDA organic program rules, but are not required to keep the same records and inspection is to their smaller scale needs. They can’t use the term organic, but they are subject to random pesticide residue testing. It is a great program and nearly 800 farms in North America are certified naturally grown! Choose these products and support small, local farms!
For additional information: https://naturallygrown.org
Certified Organic is a certification process for any business involved in organic food production and is run by the USDA. You could have organic seed suppliers, farms, food processing plants, stores, and even restaurants. There are standards that must be followed that involve avoiding most fertilizers, pesticides, antibiotics, food additives, genetically modified organisms, irradiation and biosolids. The farmland must have been free from these synthetic chemicals for several years and very strict records must be kept, products must be separate from non-organic ones, and there are random inspections. As consumers it is awesome to choose these products.
For additional information: https://usda.gov
Food Alliance Certified is 3rd party certified standards for social and environmental responsibility. Farms and ranches are required to produce Food Alliance Certified products, provide safe working conditions, minimize pesticide use, conserve soil and water conditions, protect the natural habitat and strive to improve practices.
For additional information: https://foodalliance.org
Salmon Safe is a non-profit, 3rd party certification program for farms who use conservation practices that help restore native salmon habitat in the Pacific Northwest rivers and streams. Salmon-safe farms protect water quality, fish and wildlife habitat and watershed health.
For additional information: https://stewardshippartners.org
Community Supported Agriculture or CSA’s are where farms offer shares of their harvest, which is usually a box full of food crops per week. You have an agreement with your local farmer to pay him money upfront in return for a portion of his product. If the farmer has a good year, so do you. Farmers benefit from your support and you benefit from getting fresh food!
For additional information in the Seattle area: https://pugetsoundfresh.org
Understanding food terminology will allow you to purchase products with care. Advertisers will try to trick you into paying more for their natural products that are full of unnatural ingredients, but you will catch them. You will understand food terminology and make great choices!