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How Organic is Restaurant Food Touted as Organic?

Touch the Soil News #1170 (Feature photo – USDA Organic Logo – public domain) Supermarket Guru Phil Lempert discovers that strict definitions of what is organic does not apply to restaurants. Restaurants must only make a reasonable effort to ensure the food is organic, but they are not required to adhere to the same rigorous certifying process as farms and food companies.   Want More? – Sign up below Special Deals Ahead…Sign up!

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Sikkim, India – First State in the World to be 100% Organic

Touch the Soil News #1146 (Feature photo – Sikkim, India logo – Public Domain) On the other side of the world is the State of Sikkim, India. Home to a modest population of 658,000 people, Sikkim is the first state in the world whose food and farming is 100% organic. It was no small feat that over 65,000 small farmers are now all organic. The nation’s schools are also home to organic gardens. The state as recently been recognized globally for its organic milestone.

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Organics Update

Touch the Soil News #657 Sales of organic products are increasing by almost 10 percent a year, compared to growth of around 3 percent for non-organics. Preliminary estimates for 2017 are that spending on organics may reach close to $48 billion – a huge jump from 10 years ago when organic spending was around $19 billion. Organic purchases have reached the broader public with a recent Nielson poll showing that over 50 percent of households buy organic produce. However, most organic purchases are concentrated to a much smaller number of households. The poll reveals that only 2 percent of households spend more than 50 percent of their produce dollars on…

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Arguing For Organics

Touch the Soil News #609 The Organic Trade Association – which represents the organic industry – has decided to bust up some of the myths about organic foods. Their claims about organic (USDA) certified include:   Organic is and always has been non-GMO. Rigorous U.S. standards apply to both domestic and imported organic foods. Products bearing the USDA Organic label are grown with no toxic pesticides and fertilizers, no antibiotics, no synthetic growth hormones, no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives and no sewage sludge or irradiation. Organic reduces health risks as they minimize exposure to toxic chemicals and pesticides. Eating organic fruits and vegetables could increase antioxidant intake by 20-40…

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Will Home Gardeners Ever Produce Their Own Milk?

Touch the Soil News #408 Chances are they will not. But if they did, they might do it organically. Since fluid milk and its families of products such as cheese and yogurt are in many of the foods we buy, the universe of milk in general and organic milk in specifics is of impact to us all. The largest purveyor of organic milk owns a brand that we are all familiar with – Organic Valley. What makes them different is that they are a cooperative of small dairy families around the nation. The actual name of the cooperative is “Cooperative Regions of Organic Producer Pools (CROPP).” CROPP had its beginnings…

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The Current State of Organics (and local food) in the USA

Touch the Soil News #361 The USDA just announced that the number of domestic certified organic farms increased by 12 percent between 2014 and 2015. According to the announcement, the United States has 21,781 certified organic operations or 70 percent of the world’s 31,160 organic farms. The USDA began keeping track of organic farms in 2002. With the growth last year, the number of organic farms have increased 300 percent since 2002. Global organic food sales now top $75 billion out of which $39 billion (52 percent) takes place in the United States. Because of the cost of getting certified organic, large food companies like Costco are getting involved in…

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The World’s Largest Organic Food Vision Moves to Reality

Touch the Soil News #316 The Times of India has just released an interesting news piece about food and farming. Sikkim, one of the smallest states in India (population 620,000) is a new test case for a much larger movement in India to go organic. This small state is banning the use of chemical-based fertilizers and pesticides and is embracing an agricultural platform of all organic. A much larger state in India – Kerala (population 34,000,000) is looking to become fully organic by year end 2016. Not to be outdone, the largest state in India – Rajasthan (population 75,000,000) has just banned the growing of Genetically Modified Crops and taken…

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