USDA ‘Organic-Washing’: Another Way To Mislead The U.S. Consumer?


USDA 'Organic-Washing': Another Way To Mislead The U.S. Consumer?

USDA organic certification affords the U.S. consumer one of the only food quality protections available today, but does it really guarantee a product is chemical free?

What’s a consumer to do today? Between cause- and patently false-marketing, looking beneath the surface appearances of product packaging and advertising becomes a necessity, lest we harm ourselves or the environment unknowingly, or support industries that don’t have our best interests in mind.

You may already know about green-washingpink-washing and so-called gene-washing(i.e. ‘natural’ labeled products containing GMOs), but prepare yourself for the next level of @%@#!% with “organic-washing.”

We hit upon this topic recently in our exposé on USDA organic baby formula containing a chemical ingredient used as a pesticide, but the problem extends to many other “certified organic” products and brands on the market.

organic super puffs

For instance, recently my wife brought home a product by a generally good company, Plum organics baby, who deserves recognition for making some actually pure and organic products. The product is called “organic super puffs,” and describes itself as “fruit & veggie grain puffs,” bearing the reassuring “USDA organic” logo.  [See the product here] If I wasn’t such a neurotic label reader I could have easily fallen for buying this product myself.

Nowhere on the seemingly wholesome product label is there an indication that it contains chemical ingredients. Even the Nutrition Facts panel doesn’t help. Zinc 15%. Vitamin E 15%. Looking good, right?

Nope. A more careful analysis of the presumably organic “ingredients” below the Nutrition Facts panel reveals the following enhancements:

Vitamins and Minerals: Tricalcium phosphate (Calcium), Ascorbic Acid (vitamin C), Ferrous Sulfate MonohydrateDl-alpha tocopherol(Vitamin E), Mixed Tocopherols for Freshness (Vitamin E), Vitamin A Palmitate, Cholecalciferol (Vitamin D).

We aren’t going to nit-pick about all of these inorganic vitamins and minerals, but there are two that we must say a word about.  It is downright disturbing to find ferrous sulfate monohydrate (Elemental Iron) and dl-alpha tocopherol (Vitamin E) in any USDA certified organic product.

Ferrous sulfate is basically inorganic or ‘elemental’ iron. It is notorious for causing adverse symptoms as a supplement, including vomiting and constipation. When consumed in excess, as in the case of a child accidentally consuming their parents iron-containing supplements, elemental iron is the #1 cause of death from accidental poisoning in children under 6.  A common justification for its use as a ‘nutrient’ in food is that in ‘small doses’ it can do no harm; the body, after all, is a ‘biofilter’ capable of dealing with a wide range of toxins, and iron is essential for health, right? Even if this is true, it should be a consumer/parent’s choice whether they are willing to take the risk, especially when higher quality iron supplements are available, such as glycine-bound iron.  The fact remains that elemental iron is closer to a chemical in definition than a nutrient (nutrients are organically bound to amino acids, lipids, carbohydrates), and at the very least, it shouldn’t belong in a certified organic product because it misleads the consumer into thinking it is safe a priori. [Learn more about this substance by viewing its Material Data Safety Sheet]

Next up is dl-alpha tocopherol. This strange form of “vitamin E” is actually a petrochemically derived set of 8 synthetic isomers (known as a racemic mixture) which mirror the natural complex of 8 molecules found in the real vitamin E complex, but are believed to differ structurally and functionally. For toxicology citations on the potential adverse health effects of synthetic dl- form vitamin E view our research citations on the topic: Dl-alpha tocopherol.

Is it just me, or should it be forbidden to include a synthetic, petrochemically produced form of a “vitamin” within a product intended for babies that bears the USDA certified organic logo?

With the USDA organic logo increasingly being slapped onto products that don’t represent the ethos or quality of organic, sustainable farming, either the USDA certification process needs to undergo reform, or we need another type of certification altogether. Better yet, grow your own high-quality, truly organic food, or work with local growers and producers that are doing just this. After all, we can see through recent GMO labeling initiative defeats that when it comes to enacting reform, we are going to have to do it from both top down and the bottom up, i.e. you can vote and enact immediate change with your dollar and your fork!

Advertisements

USDA Approves Genetically Engineered Potatoes


The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved commercial planting of two types of potatoes that are genetically engineered to resist the pathogen that caused the Irish potato famine.

The potatoes next must clear a voluntary review process through the Food and Drug Administration as well as get the OK from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The approval covers Idaho-based J.R. Simplot Co.’s Ranger Russet and Atlantic varieties of the company’s second generation of Innate potatoes.

The company says the potatoes will also have reduced bruising and black spots, enhanced storage capacity, and a reduced amount of a chemical created when potatoes are cooked at high temperatures that’s a potential carcinogen.

“We obviously are very proud of these,” said company spokesman Doug Cole.

The company says it expects those approvals in January with the potatoes entering the market next spring.

The two varieties join a third variety with the same traits called the Russet Burbank that has already Been approved by the Agriculture Department and FDA, with EPA approval also expected in January.

The company said the potatoes contain only potato genes, and that the resistance to late blight, the disease that caused the Irish potato famine, comes from an Argentinian variety of potato that naturally produced a defense.

Late blight continues to be a major problem for potato growers around the world, especially in wetter regions. Company officials say the new types of potatoes will bring 24-hour protections to farmers’ fields and reduce the use of pesticide spray up to 45 percent.

The reduction in bruising, Cole said, could reduce waste and increase by 15 percent the top-quality potatoes coming out of fields, which sell for more than bruised potatoes.

Cole said the new varieties of potatoes can be kept in cold storage longer. Conventional potatoes can turn a dark color when cooked after they were kept cold for too long. The enhanced cold storage could have significant ramifications for the potato chip industry by reducing trucking costs, Cole said.

The company’s second generation of Innate potatoes follows the first generation that has been selling to consumers for more than a year. Those potatoes, marketed under the White Russet label, have reduced bruising and reduced potential carcinogens when cooked, but not resistance to late blight or enhanced cold storage.

Cole said about 40 million pounds of the first generation potatoes have been sold to consumers in more than 35 states. He said that’s about 1 percent of all potato sales. Of the 40 million pounds, he said about two-thirds went to produce sections of stores.

There is no evidence that genetically modified organisms, known as GMOs, are unsafe to eat, but for some people, altering the genetic code of foods presents an ethical issue. McDonald’s has rejected using Simplot’s first generation of Innate potatoes for its French fries.

The food industry has also faced pressure from retailers as consumer awareness of genetically modified foods has increased. Retailer Whole Foods has said it plans to label GMO products in all its U.S. and Canadian stores by 2018.

A company spokeswoman declined to comment over the phone on Monday, and the company didn’t immediately respond to an emailed question from The Associated Press about whether it would consider selling the potatoes in its stores.

USDA to Allow Chickens From U.S. to Be Shipped to China for Processing and Back to U.S.


Scores of Americans are in an uproar since Food Safety News revealed the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will soon allow U.S. chickens to be sent to China for processing before being shipped back to the states for human consumption.

This arrangement is especially disturbing given China’s subpar food safety record and the fact that there are no plans to station on-site USDA inspectors at Chinese plants. Also, American consumers won’t know which brands of chicken are processed in China because there’s no requirement to label it as such. To ease concerns, lobbyists and chicken industry proponents argue no U.S. company will ever ship chicken to China for processing because it wouldn’t work economically. “Economically, it doesn’t make much sense,” said Tom Super, spokesman for the National Chicken Council, in a recent interview with the Houston Chronicle. “Think about it: A Chinese company would have to purchase frozen chicken in the U.S., pay to ship it 7,000 miles, unload it, transport it to a processing plant, unpack it, cut it up, process/cook it, freeze it, repack it, transport it back to a port, then ship it another 7,000 miles.

I don’t know how anyone could make a profit doing that.” Yet, a similar process is already being used for U.S. seafood. According to the Seattle Times, domestically caught Pacific salmon and Dungeness crab are being processed in China and shipped back to the U.S. because of significant cost savings. “There are 36 pin bones in a salmon and the best way to remove them is by hand,” said Charles Bundrant, founder of Trident, which ships about 30 million pounds of its 1.2 billion-pound annual harvest to China for processing. “Something that would cost us $1 per pound labor here, they get it done for 20 cents in China.” Bureau of Labor Statistics data estimates that American poultry processors are paid roughly $11 per hour on average.

In China, reports have circulated that the country’s chicken workers can earn significantly less—$1 to 2 per hour—which casts doubt on Super’s economic feasibility assessment. China’s food safety system, which is said to be decades behind America’s, is highly questionable given some of the more recent food safety scandals that have surfaced in the country: More than 300,000 Chinese children have suffered illness, and several have died, from melamine-tainted milk powder. Dangerously high levels of mercury have been found in Chinese baby formula. More than $1 million worth of rat and

Also, American consumers won’t know which brands of chicken are processed in China because there’s no requirement to label it as such. To ease concerns, lobbyists and chicken industry proponents argue no U.S. company will ever ship chicken to China for processing because it wouldn’t work economically. “Economically, it doesn’t make much sense,” said Tom Super, spokesman for the National Chicken Council, in a recent interview with the Houston Chronicle. “Think about it: A Chinese company would have to purchase frozen chicken in the U.S., pay to ship it 7,000 miles, unload it, transport it to a processing plant, unpack it, cut it up, process/cook it, freeze it, repack it, transport it back to a port, then ship it another 7,000 miles. I don’t know how anyone could make a profit doing that.” Yet, a similar process is already being used for U.S. seafood. According to the Seattle Times, domestically caught Pacific salmon and Dungeness crab are being processed in China and shipped back to the U.S. because of significant cost savings. “There are 36 pin bones in a salmon and the best way to remove them is by hand,” said Charles Bundrant, founder of Trident, which ships about 30 million pounds of its 1.2 billion-pound annual harvest to China for processing. “Something that would cost us $1 per pound labor here, they get it done for 20 cents in China.” Bureau of Labor Statistics data estimates that American poultry processors are paid roughly $11 per hour on average. In China, reports have circulated that the country’s chicken workers can earn significantly less—$1 to 2 per hour—which casts doubt on Super’s economic feasibility assessment. China’s food safety system, which is said to be decades behind America’s, is highly questionable given some of the more recent food safety scandals that have surfaced in the country: More than 300,000 Chinese children have suffered illness, and several have died, from melamine-tainted milk powder. Dangerously high levels of mercury have been found in Chinese baby formula. More than $1 million worth of rat and

Yet, a similar process is already being used for U.S. seafood. According to the Seattle Times, domestically caught Pacific salmon and Dungeness crab are being processed in China and shipped back to the U.S. because of significant cost savings. “There are 36 pin bones in a salmon and the best way to remove them is by hand,” said Charles Bundrant, founder of Trident, which ships about 30 million pounds of its 1.2 billion-pound annual harvest to China for processing. “Something that would cost us $1 per pound labor here, they get it done for 20 cents in China.” Bureau of Labor Statistics data estimates that American poultry processors are paid roughly $11 per hour on average. In China, reports have circulated that the country’s chicken workers can earn significantly less—$1 to 2 per hour—which casts doubt on Super’s economic feasibility assessment. China’s food safety system, which is said to be decades behind America’s, is highly questionable given some of the more recent food safety scandals that have surfaced in the country: More than 300,000 Chinese children have suffered illness, and several have died, from melamine-tainted milk powder. Dangerously high levels of mercury have been found in Chinese baby formula. More than $1 million worth of rat and

China’s food safety system, which is said to be decades behind America’s, is highly questionable given some of the more recent food safety scandals that have surfaced in the country: More than 300,000 Chinese children have suffered illness, and several have died, from melamine-tainted milk powder. Dangerously high levels of mercury have been found in Chinese baby formula. More than $1 million worth of rat and other small mammal meat has been sold to Chinese consumers as lamb. Food Safety News aims to spread awareness of the pending USDA agreement and stop Chinese-processed chicken from ever reaching supermarkets or school lunchrooms.

The USDA just released a massive new report on what’s actually healthy


The USDA, one of the government organisations responsible for setting up dietary guidelines, just came out with its major five-year report on guidelines for healthy eating.

The guidelines impact what goes into school lunches and government programs that promote healthy diets. The recommendations made some major changes in the way they address protein of all kinds and added sugar. Interestingly, the recommendations specifically advised teen boys and adult men to eat less protein in the form of meat, poultry, and eggs.

In the report, the USDA wrote, “average intakes of meats, poultry, and eggs, a subgroup of the protein foods group, are above recommendations in the Healthy U.S.-Style Eating Pattern for teen boys and adult men”.

Protein

However, the new recommendations for actual protein intake are exactly the same as they were in 2010, as you can see in the charts below.

The 2015 guidelines suggest that women aged 19-30 on a 2,000 calorie-per-day diet eat 46 grams of protein a day, while men that same age eat 56 grams of protein. That’s identical to the 2010 recommendations.

2015:

skitched-2015USDA

2010:

2010-skitched-usdaUSDA

So while the new guidelines place emphasis, on the one hand, on reducing specific sources of protein intake (suggesting that men and boys in particular eat less meat, poultry, and eggs), they also appear to make the exact same specific protein recommendations.

Sugar

As for sugar, the new guidelines limit sugar to only 10 percent of daily calories. Same goes for saturated fat, which is now also limited to 10 percent or less of daily calories.

The guidelines shift the focus more from individual food groups to “healthy eating patterns” to integrate that healthy eating into everyday life.

The new guidelines also remove past restrictions on cholesterol, which was previously limited to 300 milligrams a day.

This article was originally published by Business Insider.

More from Business Insider:

New Wave of GMO Crops Poised for Approval Despite Public Outcry


What should you battle a super weed crisis with?More GMO crops – ones that can’t be killed with weed killer. They did this once before, now twice…the more resistant the GMO crop, the more chemicals in our food, what’s next?

Article image

Despite its own admission that it will cause an up to seven-fold increase in chemical pesticide use, the U.S. Department of Agriculture(USDA) is poised to approve a new type of genetically engineered seed built to resist one of the most toxic weedkillers on the market.

Now, total approval hinges on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. If that federal body approves the new genetically modified organism (GMO), farmers will be free to plant corn and soy seeds genetically manipulated to live through sprayings of Dow’s Enlist Duo herbicide, a chemical cocktail containing both glyphosate and the antiquated, toxic chemical 2,4-D. Ironically, in the ’90s, chemical companies said the development of GMOs would eliminate the need to use older, more dangerous chemicals like 2,4-D. But as GMO use ramped up over the last few decades, chemical use increased, and many weeds are no longer responding to glyphosate, the main ingredient inRoundup, and the current chemical of choice for GMO farmers. This has created a “superweed” crisis, creating millions of acres of U.S. fields infested with hard-to-kill weeds.

With this week’s USDA final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) suggesting approval of the new GMO, many public food and safety experts say the American public faces unprecedented risks. After all, current chemical use is so high that foods now actually contain “extreme” levels of glyphosate. Because it’s systemic, it actually winds up inside of food. Adding 2,4-D to the mix is even more concerning, given its ties to cancer.

“USDA’s announcement is an outrageous abdication of USDA’s responsibility to protect our health and our food supply. The Obama Administration has ignored the interests and demands of millions of Americans, Members of Congress, and scientists, farmers and health professionals,” says Andrew Kimbrell, executive director ofCenter for Food Safety.Farmers are upset about the decision, too. “Weed resistance is a major problem for farmers and we need a solution. This decision shows that the only options USDA is willing to consider are ones that lead to increased profits for chemical companies. We need to get off the pesticide treadmill, not increase the speed,” says George Naylor, Center for Food Safety board member and Iowa corn and soybean farmer.

Suggested approval comes despite USDA’s acknowledgment that Dow’s crops will trigger a three- to seven-fold increase in agricultural use of 2,4-D, foster 2,4-D resistance in weeds and inhibit farmers’ use of non-chemical weed control methods. “USDA’s decision represents a huge setback for farmers and sustainable agriculture. Independent scientists have linked 2,4-D to cancer, Parkinson’s disease and other maladies,” says Bill Freese,science policy analyst at Center for Food Safety. “Introduction of 2,4-D- resistant corn and soybeans will dramatically increase use of this toxic herbicide, leading to more disease, environmental harm and increasingly intractable weeds for farmers.”

The adoption of this new generation of GMOs also threatens farmer’s market favorites like tomatoes, peppers, grapes (and wine!) and potaotes. Any 2,4-D drift could cause these crops to become mangled and deformed, or even outright kill them.

Can ‘powdered rain’ make drought a thing of the past?


The lack of water is a growing, global problem that seems intractable.

While the UN estimates that a large majority of the water we use goes on irrigation, researchers have been working on a range of ideas that make the water we use in agriculture last longer.

CD558DADFEB3030EE7D2E76CAE96DD1F

There has been a great deal of excitement and some dramatic headlines in recent weeks about a product that is said to have the potential to overcome the global challenge of growing crops in arid conditions.

“Solid Rain” is a powder that’s capable of absorbing enormous amounts of water and releasing it slowly over a year so that plants can survive and thrive in the middle of a drought.

A litre of water can be absorbed in as little as 10 grams of the material, which is a type of absorbent polymer originally pioneered by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Back in the 1970s, USDA developed a super-absorbent product made from a type of starch nicknamed the “super slurper“.

The most widely used, commercial application of this technology has been in disposable nappies, or diapers as they are quaintly termed in the US.

But a Mexican chemical engineer called Sergio Jesus Rico Velasco saw more in the product than dry bottoms.

He developed and patented a different version of the formula that could be mixed in with soil to hold water that could then slowly feed plants.

_69356646_solidrain2

Ground water

He formed a company to sell Solid Rain and it has quietly been selling the product in Mexico for around 10 years. The company says that the government there tested Solid Rain and found that crop yields could increase by 300% when it was added to the soil.

According to Edwin Gonzalez, a vice president with the Solid Rain company, the product is now attracting wider interest because of growing concerns about the scarcity of water.

“It works by encapsulating the water, and our product lasts 8 to 10 years in the ground, depending on the water quality – if you use pure water, it lasts longer,” he told BBC News.

The company recommends using about 50kgs per hectare – though it’s not cheap, at $1,500 (£960) for that amount.

Mr Gonzalez was at pains to point out that Solid Rain was all natural and would not damage the land even if it was used for several years.

“Our product is not toxic; it’s made from a bio-acrylamide. After it disintegrates, the powder-like substance becomes part of the plant – it is not toxic,” he said.

Science uncertain

But not everyone is convinced that Solid Rain is a significant solution to the problem of drought.

Dr Linda Chalker-Scott from Washington State University says that these types of products have been known to gardeners for several years now.

“They’re hardly new, and there’s no scientific evidence to suggest that they hold water for a year, or last for 10 years in the soil,” she told BBC News.

“An additional practical problem is that gels can do as much harm as good. As the gels begin to dry out, they soak up surrounding water more vigorously. That means they will start taking water directly from plant roots,” she added.

Dr Chalker-Scott says that research she carried out in Seattle with newly transplanted trees showed that wood chip mulching was just as effective as adding powdered materials and gels to the soil. And it was significantly cheaper.

However, Edwin Gonzalez says Solid Rain is different.

“There are other competitors that last three or four years. The ones that don’t last as long are the ones that have sodium – they don’t absorb as much. The potassium ones, like ours, are seen as the better products,” he said

Despite the fact that the science may not be entirely certain about the benefits of products like this, Edwin Gonzalez says his company has been inundated with enquiries from dry spots including India and Australia.

And he’s also had several orders from the UK, where the lack of water is usually not a problem.

Source:BBC

Beepocalypse Redux: Honeybees Are Still Dying — and We Still Don’t Know Why.


bee
The honeybees are dying — and we don’t really know why. That’s the conclusion of a massive Department of Agriculture (USDAreport that came out late last week on colony-collapse disorder (CCD), the catchall term for the large-scale deaths of honeybee groups throughout the U.S. And given how important honeybees are to the food that we eat — bees help pollinate crops that are worth more than $200 billion a year — the fact that they are dying in large numbers, and we can’t say why, is very, very worrying.

CCD was first reported in 2006, when commercial beekeepers began noticing that their adult worker honeybees would suddenly flee the hive, ending up dead somewhere else and leading to the rapid loss of the colony. On normal years, commercial beekeepers might expect to lose 10% to 15% of their colony, but over the past five years, mortality rates for commercial operations in the U.S. have ranged from 28% to 33%. Since 2006 an estimated 10 million beehives worth about $200 each have been lost, costing beekeepers some $2 billion. There are now 2.5 million honeybee colonies in the U.S., down from 6 million 60 years ago. And if CCD continues, the consequences for the agricultural economy — and even for our ability to feed ourselves — could be dire. “Currently, the survivorship of honeybee colonies is too low for us to be confident in our ability to meet the pollination demands of U.S. agricultural crops,” the USDA report said.

So what’s causing CCD — and how can we stop it?

The problem is that there doesn’t seem to be a single smoking gun behind CCD. The USDA report points at a range of possible causes, including:

  • A parasitic mite called Varroa destructor that has often been found in decimated colonies
  • Several viruses
  • A bacterial disease called European foulbrood that is increasingly being detected in U.S. bee colonies
  • The use of pesticides, including neonicotinoids, a neuroactive chemical

Since CCD isn’t so much a single disease as it is a collection of symptoms, chances are that some or all of these factors, working in concert, might be behind the disappearance of the honeybees. The presence of the Varroa mite, for instance, can worsen the impact of existing viruses, while the stress of shipping bees back and forth across the country — increasingly common in commercial beekeeping — may be amplifying the stress on the insects and leaving them more vulnerable to CCD. (If you think a cross-country flight is rough on you, just imagine what it’s like for a honeybee hive.) The fact that CCD is increasingly seen in other countries as well gives more weight to the notion that there may be multiple factors at work.

Still, environmentalists have focused most on the potential role of pesticides — especially the powerful neonicotinoids — and some lab studies have found that the chemicals can adversely affect bee health. It’s not that the pesticides — which are aimed at other insects — are killing the bees outright, but rather that sublethal exposure in nectar and pollen may be interfering with the honeybees’ internal radar, preventing them from gathering pollen and returning safely to the hive.

The USDA report mostly withholds judgment on neonicotinoids, citing the need for more research, and the Environmental Protection Agency is conducting a very slow review of the evidence. Last week, though, the E.U., which is also grappling with CCD, decided it was done waiting, and announced a two-year ban on neonicotinoids. The European Commission enacted the ban on the recommendation of the European Food Safety Authority, which said in January that the pesticides should be restricted until scientists had cleared the chemicals of a role in CCD.

The chemical industry, unsurprisingly, disputes the finding. Bayer CropScience, a major pesticide manufactuer, said in a statement after the ban was announced:

As a science-based company, Bayer CropScience is disappointed that clear scientific evidence has taken a backseat in the decisionmaking process. This disproportionate decision is a missed opportunity to reach a solution that takes into consideration all of the existing product-stewardship measures and broad stakeholder concerns. The further reduction of effective crop-protection products will put at risk farmers’ ability to tackle important pests that can severely restrict their ability to grow high-quality food.

As Brad Plumer pointed out over at the Washington Post, it’s not that the E.U. necessarily has more evidence about the role that the chemicals might be playing in CCD. This is a classic case of policymaking by the precautionary principle. The pesticides are considered guilty until proven innocent, and so they’re preventively banned, even before the scientific case is rock solid. That’s not unusual for European environmental regulation, especially in regard to chemicals. In the U.S. it’s the reverse — before the federal government is likely to take the step of banning a class of pesticides, and pissing off the multibillion-dollar chemical industry, you’re likely to see a lot more science done.

So what we may get in Europe and the U.S. is a de facto field test of the real impact of neonicotinoids on CCD. In two years, if American bees are still dying and their European cousins are thriving, we might just have our answers. And if not, well, I hope you don’t like cashews, beets, broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts, chestnuts, watermelons, cucumber, fennel, strawberries, macadamia, mangoes, apricots, almonds or any of the other dozens of food crops pollinated by our hardworking, six-legged, unpaid farmworkers.

Source: Time.com

 

 

“Free-Range Certified 100% Organic Chicken: An Exceptionally Clean, Healthy and Delicious Source of Essential Protein!”


Free-Range Certified 100% Organic Chicken: An Exceptionally Clean, Healthy and Delicious Source of Essential Protein!”

Eating clean and healthy protein is absolutely crucial if you want to prevent disease and premature aging, increase your daily energy and live longer. But unlike the unhealthy chicken you’ll find in grocery stores and restaurants, which you should restrict in your diet (as you will read below), this free-range certified organic chicken is one of the cleanest and healthiest sources of protein that you will find anywhere.

As many of you know, I only recommend foods that meet the highest of requirements in terms of their health value to you. Well, it has taken my team many months of research and evaluation to find and finally offer you an organic chicken product that comes with my absolute highest recommendation because it meets all of these qualifications for a perfect meat:

  • USDA Certified organic, meaning 100% organically raised from “egg to plate”.
  • No antibiotics ever used.
  • No hormones ever used.
  • No pesticides or herbicides ever used in the soil or the feed.
  • No artificial ingredients whatsoever.
  • Entirely free-ranged so these chickens are not “stressed;” meanwhile, mass-produced chickens are raised in severely cramped quarters which translate to not only reduced health value, but less taste.
  • The juiciest, most delicious tasting chicken you’ve ever tried.
  • An exceptional source of protein, as you can see in the chart below.
  • Come from farms that promote sustainable farming and sound environmental practices.

Why Does “Free-Range” and “Antibiotic-Free” Matter So Much with Chicken?

The mass-produced chicken you find in grocery stores, are typically inhumanely raised in extremely cramped quarters where they can barely move. This creates stress in the chickens that can lead to disease and the need for antibiotics. Stressed growing conditions can also cause “stunted” meat devoid of taste and total health value, hence creating the need for chemicals to artificially moisten the meat.

Organic, free-range chickens, on the other hand, have plenty of room to roam and eat their entirely natural diets. Thriving in a stress-free environment, this makes all the difference in the world in terms of their health and taste value to you.

Another crucial reason this free-range organic chicken is an exceptional source of protein in your diet is because it is free of antibiotics. Over half of the antibiotics fed to mass-produced farm animals including chickens, are identical to the ones administered to humans. As has been well publicized in the media, overuse of such antibiotics can lead to strains of bacteria resistance to the antibiotic, opening doors wider to the potential for human disease.

(*See The World Health Organization report, “WHO Global Strategy for Containment of Antimicrobial Resistance,” for more information on this. This report states that farmers’ use of antibiotics in livestock enables microbes to build up defenses against the drugs, leap up in the food chain and attack human immune systems, and they’re one of many major health organizations that call for an end to such antibiotics in poultry and livestock.)

Calories:

110

     From Fat: 10

Total Fat

1

g.
Saturated Fat

.5

g.
Cholesterol

65

mg.
Sodium

160

mg.
Total Carbs

0

g.
Protein

22

g.
Organic Chicken Thighs
Nutrition Information
Calories:

180

     From Fat: 110

Total Fat

12

g.
Saturated Fat

4

g.
Cholesterol

85

mg.
Sodium

75

mg.
Total Carbs

0

g.
Protein

19

g.
Organic Whole Chicken
Nutrition Information
(Serving Size 4OZ. (112G))
Calories:

210

     From Fat: 130

Total Fat

17

g.
Saturated Fat

5

g.
Cholesterol

95

mg.
Sodium

70

mg.
Total Carbs

0

g.
Protein

21

g.

Introducing…Unsurpassed Certified Organic Free-Range Chicken

We work with a select network of organic farmers who strongly believe in raising chickens as nature intended. Freely roaming with access to fresh air and sunshine, along with vegetarian organic feed are the basic essentials.

Beyond that, we support self-sufficient and sustainable agriculture, family farms, and organic practices that produce healthy, environmentally friendly food.

We have searched the country to locate poultry and meats that are not only organic, but also tender, juicy, and delicious.

Our organic chicken is raised by farmers who do things the old fashioned way – meaning they take care of the land and humanely raise animals without antibiotics, synthetic hormones, or synthetic pesticides.

The chicken’s feed is grown on the farm without synthetic fertilizers and pesticides as well, contributing even further to sustainable farming practices.

Farms that practice sustainable agriculture are good for the environment. By reducing their use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers and using less fuel to truck in pesticides, fertilizers and feed, they decrease chemical run-off and the dependence on foreign oil.

Overall, these farms create a smaller carbon footprint and help replenish and preserve the land for future generations.

When you eat free-range chicken from us, you know we’re providing the healthiest, safest, and tastiest chicken available anywhere.

A Healthful Source of Protein… And a Great Value Too

“Take Your Food to the Salt” and Transform Any Dish From Ho-Hum to Spectacular

Don’t just salt your food with Himalayan Crystal Salt, take it to the slab!

Featured on several top cooking shows, using a Himalayan Salt Kitchen Slab has become the newest sensation for extraordinary food preparation and presentation.

Simply preheat your crystal salt slab over a grill or stove and toss on your favorite sliced meats, seafood, vegetables or eggs. The Himalayan Salt sears your food to perfection, with a just a light touch of heavenly salty mineral sweetness.

The Himalayan Salt Kitchen Slab is perfect for cold foods, too. Just chill your slab in the refrigerator and then load with sushi, hors d’oeuvres, cheeses and slices of fruit. You’ll love the delicate saltiness imparted to your food and the beautiful translucent pink salt serving platter will become an instant conversation starter.

For a special treat, arrange thin strips of raw grass-fed beef on your chilled slab and watch as the salt cures the edges.

Chill slab in the freezer overnight and serve ice cream on top for a beautiful presentation and delicate salty-sweet goodness.

Find out more about the Himalayan Salt Kitchen Slab here.

Besides being a truly ideal source of clean and healthy protein with all the essential amino acids your body needs to prevent disease, avoid premature aging, increase energy and strength and live longer, this free-ranged certified organic chicken is:

  • Totally delicious … in fact, you’ve probably never tasted a better chicken because it is raised entirely on its natural diet, in its natural environment.
  • Just as versatile and easy to prepare as any other chicken, but naturally more moist and juicy.
  • A great value. Yes, it costs more than store-bought chickens that are mass produced and of negligible health value, but it costs less than many so-called “healthy” chickens and significantly less than many other forms of healthy meats.
  • ·         Source: Dr. Mercola

USDA Issues New Safety Rules for Beef.


Zero Tolerance for Toxic E. coli; Beef Held Until Tests Done

The USDA today announced two new rules to make U.S. beef safer.

The announcement accompanied the first report of the two-year-old Food Safety Working Group, led by the White House and staffed by agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Taking effect in 2012, the new rules:

  1. Declare “adulterated” and unfit for sale any beef that tests positive for any shigella toxin-producing E. coli bacteria. Current rules cover only a single strain of the potentially deadly bug, yet the other strains cause about 112,000 illnesses each year.
  2. Begin a “test and hold” policy for beef. Beef lots selected for testing will be withheld from market until test results show them to be free of germs and drug residues. Under the current system, beef that tests positive for bacteria or contaminants has to be recalled. The FDA estimates that the test-and-hold policy would have prevented 44 recalls from 2007 through 2009.

“We have improved food safety in the last two years,” USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack said at a news conference. “Our new standards for poultry establishments may prevent as many as 25,000 food-borne illnesses each year.”

In 2009, the FDA issued an egg safety rule to help prevent salmonella outbreaks. The agency expects the rules to cut egg-related salmonella illnesses by 60%. That would prevent about 79,000 illnesses a year, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said at the news conference.

“We are well on our way to building a modern food safety system,” Sebelius said. “Millions in the U.S. still suffer from food-borne illnesses each year. Thousands are hospitalized and too many die. Too often we find ourselves trying to track down the source of an outbreak once it happens rather than preventing it.”

‘The Work Is Not Done’

The report by the Food Safety Working Group is littered with the acronyms of subgroups and tools created to prevent, track, and respond to food-borne illnesses. The efforts include:

  • Enhanced disease surveillance by the CDC.
  • A reportable food registry to enable tracking of contaminated foods to their sources.
  • Efforts to recognize and control drug-resistant bacteria and viruses.
  • Ensuring the safety of imported foods. Imports make up 15% of the U.S. food supply, including 75% to 80% of seafood, 50% of fresh fruit, and about 20% of vegetables.

But whether these efforts will receive adequate federal and state funding remains a question. Most of the federal efforts depend on a partnership with state health departments, which face funding crises in many states.

“The work is not done, which is why the food safety group plans to continue its efforts,” Vilsack said. “We are very pleased with the progress that has been made and are very proud of the work that has been done.”

Source:webMD