Organic food – Better Health Channel

Posted: March 1, 2020 at 4:46 am


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Organic farmers and food producers grow and produce food without using synthetic chemicals such as pesticides and artificial fertilisers. They do not use genetically modified (GM) components or expose food to irradiation.

Animal welfare and environmental sustainability are important issues for organic farmers. The term organic can also cover animal products. For example, eggs certified as organic are free range, rather than from caged (battery) hens.

Types of organic produce available in Australia include fruit and vegetables, dried legumes, grains, meat and meat products, dairy foods, eggs, honey and some processed foods.

Organic farming is also concerned with protecting the environment and working in harmony with existing ecosystems, including conserving water, soil and energy, and using renewable resources and natural farming cycles. Traditional farming methods are often used, such as rotating crops to prevent depleting the soil of nutrients.

Certain naturally occurring pesticides, including pyrethrins, light oils, copper and sulphur, and biological substances such as Bacillus thuringiensis, are permitted for use in organic farming.

Consumer demand for organic food is growing at a rate of 2030 per cent per year, with retail sales increasing 670 per cent between 1990 and 200102. It is estimated that more than six out of every ten Australian households now buy organic foods on occasion.

Before 2009, a standard (guidelines and rules) did not exist for domestic and imported organic foods. This led to a misrepresentation of the word organic in the Australian domestic food market.

Two key standards now govern the production, processing and labelling of organic food in Australia. These are:

While it is mandatory for exported organic produce to be certified and meet the National Standard for Organic and Biodynamic Produce, the Australian standard (for domestic and imported foods) is not mandated, and certification is voluntary. Its purpose is to assist the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC the national consumer regulatory authority) to ensure that claims made about organic and biodynamic products are not false or misleading.

Organic-certified produce means the food was grown, harvested, stored and transported without the use of synthetic chemicals, irradiation or fumigants.

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Organic food - Better Health Channel

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March 1st, 2020 at 4:46 am

Posted in Organic Food