Where’s the (organic) Beef?

By now you’re likely seeing increasing organic options at your grocer.  Organic grapes, blueberries, spinach, apples, and celery can easily find their way into your cart.  But, chances are, your canvas shopping bag goes home with one product lacking the organic symbol.  Meat.

Why?  Well, if you’re buying organic produce it’s not because you don’t care.  It’s because organic meat is hard to find (unless you’re at Whole Foods or Trader Joes).  Why is it hard to find?  Simple, it’s harder to produce.

Organic produce has one basic requirement, no pesticides or herbicides.  Meat has several.  Including: no antibiotics, no hormones, animals must be treated humanely, no non-organic feed, and grass-fed.   And, most importantly, the following of all those requirements must be certified by an inspector.  That’s alot of costly inputs to manage.

So what to do?  Well, you can regularly shop Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s (or other like-minded grocers) for your meat purchases.  Or, you can closely examine labels on the options in your grocer’s meat section for something similar to this:

That’s from my local grocery, Publix.  Notice there’s no organic symbol.  What it does say, and what you should look for are: No antibiotics, No hormones.

I’d also prefer to see grass-fed for beef.  A vegetarian diet simply means it wasn’t fed any animal products.  This product could have been fed non-organic feed.  In fact, it likely was.  Alas, you can’t always get what you want…

How easy it for you to find organic meat in your neighborhood?


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