What you need to know about eating organic!
For several years now, you’ve been hearing more and more people talk about organic food, but you’re not sure what it is specifically? There is so much conflicting information out there! Better, more expensive, less beautiful, healthier… Phew! We’ll try to clean up this information to help you find organic products first. We will then focus on their shelf life and the perks of eating organic!
Recognizing organic products
First of all, the term organic refers to the method of production of the food. So, if we take the example of the carrot, it was grown on an organic farm. An organic farm does not use chemical agents, hormones, antibiotics, genetically modified organisms and artificial additives.
Being certified organic
The term organic is protected and producers must demonstrate certain criteria to obtain this title.
PLU codes: fresh products
If you are looking for organic products in the vegetable and fruit section at the market, you need to look for the PLU codes. These codes are on the little stickers that are on all fruits and vegetables sold individually.
Organic products have a code starting with the number 9. Sometimes, in the grocery store, there is also a section dedicated to organic products. If you are not sure, don’t hesitate to consult your grocer.
Organic certification: processed products
On processed products, you will find two logos. They are regulated by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). In order to qualify for this logo, the product must contain at least 95 % organic ingredients.
The cost of organic products
Since farmers do not use chemical agents, their harvest is smaller than conventional methods. This explains why organic products are often more expensive than conventional products.
To save money, you can go to local markets or directly to the source. Going directly to organic farms can be a financial winner! And above all, you encourage someone from your region. You can also choose fruits and vegetables that are in season.
A negative point of fresh organic products is that they have a shorter shelf life than other products. In fact, it is essential that you plan your grocery shopping and your recipes carefully.
To keep your fresh products longer, we recommend that you plan to eat it soon or process it.
If you find that your cauliflower is a little soft, it will be excellent in a soup with other vegetables that may be just as tired!
Finally, you can also buy large quantities of tomatoes, for example, and put them on canes to have them all year long.
The advantages of eating organic
- Environment: reduces pollution and preserves farmland;
- Animals: no hormones or antibiotics;
- Organic milk and meat: more omega-3 fatty acids;
- Organic food could be more nutritious (antioxidants and vitamins);
- Less nitrates.
That’s it! Organic food can have both physical and environmental benefits. It’s up to you to explore this world of possibilities! Even though they are sometimes more expensive, it is possible to find bargains and save money by avoiding waste. However, no matter where it comes from, processed foods are still junk food, organic or not!