Do you ever wonder what it really means when you see things on food in the grocery store like “Free Range”, “Organic” or “Antibiotic-Free”? I’d like to believe that they mean what I want them to mean. Cool, it’s organic! It’s all natural, and good for me, and yay, no pesticides! But does it really mean all of those things? Well, thanks to a little article that I found in a stack of papers, I found out! And I’ll share my fresh found knowledge with you…
Organic: Food with an “Organic” label comes from a farm or a plant that uses no synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, or hormones, and is certified by the USDA inspector.
rBGH-Free: This means the animals were given growth hormones that could possibly raise your risk for cancer. It’s also a good sign, but not a guaranty- that you are buying from an eco friendly farm.
Antibiotic Free: Giving farm animals antibiotics too often contributes to water pollution and creates drug resistant bacteria in animals like cows- causing more cases of tough to treat food borne illnesses, like e-coli.
Pasture raised: This applies to animals that grazed on grass and weren’t fattened on grain, so it cuts down on large scale, waste producing agriculture needed to grow feed.
Free Range: Unfortunately, the chickens didn’t have the fresh air, wandering through the fields life that we all hoped they did. The USDA considers just 5 minutes of outdoor access per day enough.
Hormone Free: This is legit when it comes to meat and dairy, but don’t pay more for poultry with this label: The government prohibits the use of hormones on chickens anyways.
A little inside look into food labels. Thanks Glamour, April 2007! Happy shopping, and healthy eating!