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Food

What Does the Label “Certified Organic Meat” Mean?

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When it comes to meat, it doesn’t get much healthier than “certified organic meat”.

Non-organic meat sold in supermarkets is full of growth hormones – which are injected into the animals in order to help them grow more quickly. Buying organic meat is one of the best ways to ensure that your body isn’t exposed to these hormones but there’s more.

What does it mean when your meat is “certified organic“?

  • The livestock (chickens, cows, pigs, goats, sheep, etc.) have all been fed 100% organic food – usually organically grown feed like wheat, grain, and so on.
  • No genetically modified organisms were fed to the animals, and the meat packing process didn’t involve any GMOs.
  • No chemical pesticides, fungicides, fertilizers, or pesticides were used in the growing of the livestock’s food – hence the 100% organic feed.
  • No drugs (even antibiotics) were used in the raising of the livestock, and no growth hormones were injected into the animals to speed up their growth.
  • No animal by-products were used for feed (something that is sadly very common in many factory farms).
  • The animals were treated humanely, i.e. given a decent place to sleep and live, given access to the outdoors, etc.
  • The strict U.S., Canadian, and International Standards for Organic Certification were all met in order for the meat to be certified organic.

 

Interestingly enough, the farms where the livestock is raised can be subjected to regular inspections by the certification organizations in order to ensure that the farm is meeting the conditions required for the “organic” label.

Only meat that is labeled “organic” or “100% organic” will actually meet these standards, unlike the meat with labels like “free range”, “hormone-free”, “naturally raised”, or “additive-free”. Meat that has those labels are usually from a farm that weren’t quite able to meet the requirements for organic certification listed above, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t healthy. Finding hormone and additive-free meat that is naturally raised and free range is still a good choice, but  100% certified organic meat is the way to go.

Keep in mind that whatever the animal eats so do you. All the crap they eat is store in their fat, which you then consume. You really are what you eat.

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