Mollie Stone’s is committed to meeting the needs and wants of our customers with organic and natural foods. As we celebrate Organic Harvest Month, we spotlight our locally grown, just-picked organic produce and organic products from the finest companies.
What is Organic Harvest Month?
In 1992, the Organic Trade Association (OTA) declared September to be Organic Harvest Month to promote organic foods, and to honor organic farmers for the many contributions they have made to our quality of life. By dedicating an entire month to organic agriculture and its practices, the OTA hoped to increase public awareness of the benefits of organic food. The goal was that consumers would be encouraged to choose organic over conventionally-grown foods.
Organic farmers, according to the OTA, represent “a commitment to a system of agriculture that strives for balance with nature, using methods and materials which are of low impact on the environment.” Organic production systems replenish and maintain soil fertility, resulting in biologically diverse agriculture.
How does a product become USDA Organic?
To bear the official United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Organic Seal on a package, the food or beverage must be made from at least 95% organic ingredients. Foods with at least 70% organic ingredients can use “made with organic ingredients” on the label, but do not qualify to use the USDA Organic seal.
Foods with the USDA Organic Seal must be inspected by a government-approved inspector, ensuring organic practices were followed in the growing process. Foods must be produced without conventional pesticides, petroleum-based or sewage-sludge based fertilizers, bio-engineering or radiation. “GMO-free,” “natural,” “free-range,” “cage-free” and “hormone-free” may be on the label, but may not mean that a food or product is organic.