Author Topic: Getting away from the term organic  (Read 847 times)

Frannie Koe

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Getting away from the term organic
« on: March 31, 2019, 09:10:00 PM »
We will be working toward getting away from the term organic as not everyone is certified organic. We will attempt to discuss our topics in terms of sustainability.  We will try to define terms here on this forum to prevent confusion.  Thanks!!

Zeb

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2019, 09:49:05 AM »
I appreciate this sentiment, as my wife & I opted not to trouble ourselves with the expense or time investment required by the certification process. As a result I do my best not to use the word organic in marketing or discussions about our farm, though I do find myself slipping up now and then since I consider most of what we do to be organic. However, I think society at large has become very attached to this word and am not sure that people will be quick to appreciate the good intentions of avoiding it. I think education about what organic does and does not mean, as well as what the other relevant terms mean (free-range, pastured, etc), is a good first step.
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dredman

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2019, 11:00:02 AM »
I would love to make a video on the topic if anyone is interested in talking about it in front of a camera?

Frannie Koe

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2019, 06:11:52 PM »
Thanks for joining our forum Zeb!  Are you a family physician also??  Our food hub director has a farm and often people will say naturally grown.  I also slip up and say organic but I then will try to qualify by saying not certified organic. We have to let people hear the terms they are used to.  Do you sell food?  Thanks again for your comment.

Zeb

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2019, 07:06:30 AM »
@dredman
I am pretty camera-shy, but passionate enough about this stuff to consider it. My other hesitation is that despite running a quasi-organic farm for 2yrs now, I still feel like a novice. I worry that I would end up eating my words a few years down the road after I've accumulated more knowledge.

@asklepius2007
Thanks! I am also a family physician, though brand new. I only graduated medical school a few months ago, and am in my first year of residency.
We mostly raise/grow food for ourselves in an effort to decrease our dependence on the grocery store, but we do sell a few dozen eggs each week. We also give meat/veggies/honey to neighbors/family pretty regularly, but have never produced enough of any of those to regularly market/sell. The kicker is that almost all of the food we produce for ourselves is definitely certifiable organic (vegetables, lamb, honey), but we can't call our eggs, chicken, or turkey organic because we supplement the birds' pastured-diet with free-choice layer feed that is non-organic. We considered switching to organic feed, but it is SO expensive and even with as little feed as they eat it would immediately negate the tiny profit we see each week from egg sales. Additionally, for eggs/poultry to be certified organic, I believe the bird must be fed ONLY organic feed from DAY 2 of life. So even if we began feeding them organic feed, our birds are already disqualified as they have all ingested non-organic feed.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2019, 07:33:12 PM by Zeb »
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Zeb

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2019, 07:49:32 AM »
With that being said though, I personally don't believe that my birds (or the eggs/meat they produce) are any lower quality or less healthy than most birds fed only organic feed. In fact, I'm tempted to assert that they are in fact of higher quality and healthier than many flocks fed only organic feed. Though it unarguably plays an enormous and integral role in health, I believe livestock health and wellbeing is contingent on more than diet. Housing & daily activity are also integral, and I think that our flock has most other flocks beat in that regard.
Additionally, I don't believe that organic food is necessarily always the healthier option (in regards to physiologic, not ecologic, health). Most of the time when I opt to pay for more expensive organic food, my decision is based on assumptions that it was produced in a more ecologically responsible and sustainable manner. I used to automatically assume that all organic food was physiologically-healthier than non-organic food, but after studying nutrition and exercise science in undergrad (along with the limited nutritional education I received in med school) I've come to realize that that assumption does not hold true nearly as much as I was led to believe. Nonetheless, I still tend to opt for organic over non-organic and if it were more cost-reasonable I would feed my birds only organic feed.
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Frannie Koe

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2019, 10:58:12 AM »
Zeb, even as an MD I do not buy organic feed for my birds. I do feel that the freedom the birds have along with healthier feed and being free range makes for better eggs. I also sell eggs when I have enough. I hope to make some egg mobiles in the next year or two to follow my goat on my pastures. I only have 3 goats currently but hope to increase my flock very soon.  Then my birds can follow. You mentioned seeing Justin Rhodes page. Have you tried any of his feeding methods to reduce the grains and seeds you buy for your birds?  I want to try these methods soon.  Let me know. Thanks again for your posts!

Dove

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2020, 09:23:45 AM »
A note on organic feed, yes it is expensive and Truckers Feed in Gunterville sells non-GMO but still conventionally raise crops by not adding soy beans however a farmer friend of mine used it to feed his meat birds(pastured) and without the soybeans they didn't gain the weight, he  deduced that without the soybeans they weren't getting enough protein especially in the winter.

Frannie Koe

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Re: Getting away from the term organic
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2020, 09:00:10 AM »
Thanks Dove!  Good to know.