Foods that carry the USDA Organic seal are among the most regulated, traceable and sustainably-produced in the world. Following rigorous standards managed by the National Organic Program, organic operations must demonstrate that they are protecting natural resources, conserving biodiversity and using only approved substances. Other provisions of U.S. organic standards:
- Prohibit the use of irradiation, sewage sludge, synthetic fertilizers, prohibited pesticides and genetically modified organisms
- Require that livestock producers meet animal health and welfare standards, use only 100% organic feed, provide animals with access to the outdoors and not use antibiotics or growth hormones
- Require that the products carrying the USDA Organic seal have 95% or more certified organic content
- Require that for three years prior to harvest, organic farmers can’t apply prohibited substances to the land
With global consumption of organic products increasing 8% annually, OTA’s Connect with U.S. Organic program helps you meet demand with immediate access to products following standards that are among the strictest in the world.
What is Organic?
Under USDA regulations, “organic” is a labeling term that indicates that the food or other agricultural product has been produced through approved methods that integrate cultural, biological and mechanical practices that foster cycling of resources, promote ecological balance and conserve biodiversity. Synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, irradiation and genetic engineering may not be used.