What is Organic?

Certified organic products are grown, processed and manufactured without the use of synthetic chemicals, fertilisers, pesticides, harmful additives or genetically modified ingredients.

There are several organisations in Australia which are accredited to certify organic produce and products. These certifying institutions audit farming, business, manufacturing, packaging, storing and transport methods to ensure they comply with the strict standards of organic certification.

Standards to achieve this are internationally recognised.  Annual spot-check audits of all certified operators take place by an independent third party auditor.

Eating organic food and using organic products "reduces the considerable uncertainties regarding the health implications of multiple pesticide residues, GMOs, anti-biotic resistance, nitrates and artificial food additives. Those who argue there is no compelling scientific evidence of definite harm from these issues must also concede that there is so much we do not know, that there is equally no evidence that they are safe. Consumers pursuing wellness know better than to wait for scientific consensus on such issues, and often make a personal choice instead to follow the precautionary principle.

Taste:  A common experience of organic consumers is that organic produce tastes better. Kids especially notice the difference, and I’ve heard numerous reports from parents who’s kids start actually enjoying fruits and vegetables when they make the switch to organic. Where they previously struggled to get their children to eat much fruit or any vegetables at all, all of a sudden they start asking for more! And they feel great about giving them to their kids, knowing they’re not doused in who knows how many pesticides." (BFA)

What is Organic Farming?

With thanks to the Biolological Farmers of Australia.

Organic farming systems recognise that our health is directly connected to the health of the food we eat and, ultimately, to the health of the soil.

Organic farmers aim to produce good food from a balanced living soil. Strict regulations, known as Standards, define what they can and can't do. They place strong emphasis on environmental protection and sustainability.

Organic systems rely on a modern and scientific understanding of ecology and soil science, while also depending on traditional methods of crop rotation to ensure fertility and to assist with weed and pest control. For example, a farmer might graze sheep on a field one year, making the soil more fertile, then plant wheat the next and so on.

Organic systems severely restrict the use of synthetic chemicals, pesticides and fertilisers.

Organic Farming

  • Improves the structure, fertility and health of the soil while enhancing the surrounding environment
  • Produces quality agricultural and livestock products, true to species, with high nutritional value
  • Avoids pollution resulting from agricultural methods
  • Minimises the use of non-renewable resources 
  • Increases biodiversity

Soil Fertility

Soil is managed through crop rotations and the use of green manure crops, compost and natural mineral products to maintain natural soil fertility. Artificial fertilisers are prohibited.

Pest and Disease Control

Plant health is maintained through careful planning, suitable crop rotations and mechanical and natural methods of pest and weed control. Artificial pesticides and herbicides are prohibited.

GMO's

Genetically modified organisms are strictly prohibited at every stage of production. GMO’s are not allowed on the same production unit to ensure there is no cross-contamination.

Conservation

One focus of organic farming is the development of a healthy environment, which enhances natural landscape features and encourages native plants and animal species. For example, this may include maintaining treed areas as an important wildlife habitat.

Animal Welfare

Animals are reared without the routine use of drugs such as synthetic growth hormones, antibiotics and wormers which are commonly used in intensive livestock farming. Parasite problems in farm animals are controlled through regularly moving the animals to fresh pasture and other natural and preventative methods, rather than routinely dosing the animals with drugs. Organic farming pays full regard to their evolutionary adaptations, behavioural needs and animal welfare issues with respect to nutrition, housing, health, breeding and rearing.