Organic has become a bit of a ‘buzz’ word of late, which is unfortunate because it implies so much more than just ‘natural’. According to Wikipedia, requirements for organic certifications vary from country to country, and generally involve a set of production standards for growing, storage, processing, packaging and shipping that include:
- no human sewage sludge fertilizer used in cultivation of plants or feed of animals
- avoidance of synthetic chemical inputs not on the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (e.g. fertilizer, pesticides, antibiotics, food additives etc), genetically modified organisms, irradiation, and the use of biosolids;
- use of farmland that has been free from prohibited synthetic chemicals for a number of years (often, three or more);
- keeping detailed written production and sales records (audit trail);
- maintaining strict physical separation of organic products from non-certified products;
- undergoing periodic on-site inspections.
In some countries, certification is overseen by the government, and commercial use of the term organic is legally restricted. Certified organic producers are also subject to the same agricultural, food safety and other government regulations that apply to non-certified producers.
So it’s pretty safe that not just anyone can claim ‘organic’ when it comes to food production. Unfortunately things are not as closely monitored in skin care. You can claim ‘organic’ in skin care but requirements are not strict on the percentages of organic ingredient, so read your labels! For example if the product is from America it will say ‘USDA Organic’ this ensures you are buying a certified organic product. We are still waiting for an equivalent in Australia but look for this label it means that produce used in the product is certified organic. Eminence is a Hungarian product and adhears to European certification through Biokontroll and Demeter, which are some of the highest rated organic certifiers in the world.
So why is organic so important for your health? Apart from reducing chemicals you in-take with non organic food, it reduces oestrogen disruptors in the body and allows your body to function how it’s meant to. You can reduce the risk of disease including cancers, low fertility and heart disease. It also has a higher density of nutrition than non-organic food, so you are getting more vitamins and minerals than with non organic products.
One of my favourite places to visit in Melbourne is the Ceres Centre. It’s a certified organic community environment park located in Brunswick. It has everything from organic produce they grow on site, to a permiculture nursery, a fantastic organic cafe (I highly recommend the Dandelion coffee!) and chooks! There are also rooms available to rent out to run courses, education courses and markets on a Saturday. So there is plenty to see and do, and wonderful produce to take home. It’s lovely sitting there on a Saturday morning for brunch in the sun! You can read more about Ceres here http://www.ceres.org.au/ Check my pictures below of last Saturday, I highly recommend it!