As you may find, organic vs natural labels can sometimes be confusing to consumers. We see the two labels in supermarkets and grocery stores but what do these labels guarantee? With the health of family in mind, it is our duty to decide which items are best for consumption. Read on to learn the difference between organic vs natural products.
Organic vs Natural: 7 Things You Should Know About Them
1. One’s a Guarantee and the Other’s a Promise
The first thing you need to know about organic vs natural items is the benefit each product provides. For one, organic food labels are produced with almost zero chemicals. Additionally, these labels guarantee the food was processed with almost zero artificial means. On the other hand, food labeled as natural only promise you that they were produced naturally. In fact, there are no universal standards to classify a product as natural.
2. Universal and Set Standards
The standards each label has to pass through is another difference you must know. For example, organic products use no pesticides, toxic substances, and petroleum-based fertilizers, among others. Alternatively, the said criteria do not necessarily have to be met for a product to be classified as natural. Additionally, organic products have to undergo a screening that ensures the products did not go under excessive artificial processing methods.
3. Organic Products Have a Longer Shelf Life than that of Natural Foods
The benefits of organic foods positively influence a more well-balanced and ethically conscious food industry.
— Project Grace (@projectgrace17) September 30, 2017
Organic products have undergone at least some form of artificial (but beneficial) food processing methods. As such, these items will definitely have a longer shelf life than the average natural food. Alternatively, most natural food products do not undergo artificial preservation methods which leave them with a shorter shelf life.
4. Organic Foods Have Legal Backing
Organic and natural commodities differ on how the government regulates them. There are no universal standards that apply to labeling an item as natural. As such, any brand can simply label their product as “natural” if they deem it to be. On the other hand, organic commodities are regulated by government agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Simply put, official agencies regulate the distribution and production of organic food items.
5. Natural Food May Contain More Nutrients
There are a number of consumers that patronize natural products for their fresh and raw state. They claim organic products lose some important nutrients during the food processing state, no matter how minimal it is. Similarly, there are also buyers who choose organic over natural food for their safety.
6. Organic = Organically Grown; Natural = No Artificial Processing
Organic products often denote these items were grown organically and have undergone minimal processing methods. Meanwhile, natural foods only promise they did not go through artificial processing. As such, we cannot guarantee the food’s history since they are not regulated by the FDA and USDA.
7. Almost Anything Can Be Natural
As discussed earlier, government agencies do not regulate the labeling of natural products. In fact, it is solely up to distributor whether they consider the product natural or not. As such, it is safe to say that organic food labels have a heavier bearing than natural food labels.
Watch this video by TheRunListChannel to learn more about the differences between organic vs natural food labels in the US:
Overall, government agencies regulate the labeling of items as organic. As consumers, it is our responsibility to effectively discern what products provide the most benefit. With that in mind, let’s all aim to live a healthier and greener life by differentiating organic vs natural products.
Did reading this article help you understand the differences between organic and natural products? Feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.