Navigating GMO, Organic & Fair Trade.

There are lots of things in life that I love to talk about & labeling is just one of them. GMOs, organic, fair trade and more, let’s get going!

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Hello everyone! I hope you are having a wonderful morning. Make sure to fuel your morning with a healthy nutrient packed breakfast. Even if you don’t have the time to make a delicious smoothie or egg scrambler you can still make a bowl of cereal pretty fancy! Choose the non-gmo/organic brand cereal and add nuts, dried fruit, pumpkin seeds, flax seed, hemp seed and cinnamon and you’re golden.Oh and don’t forget! Drink about 2 glasses of water upon rising and you will flush your body and get a kick-start on your day! Alright, now I mentioned it in there, let’s see if you caught it: non-gmo/organic, those are two of the labels we are going to talk about today.

Non-GMO: First off, what the heck’s a GMO? That is a question I get asked at least two times a day. GMO stands for Genetically Modified Organism. Genetically modified foods have been altered using genetic engineering. Okay, still confused? Here, you take an insecticide, inject it into some sweet corn and you get Bt-Sweet Corn. So what is the big deal? I’m sure you’re thinking “the farmer doesn’t have to spray insecticide anymore which will be better for him and the environment.” Ehh, true but the disadvantages outweigh the advantages. 1) This insecticide ends up poisoning the insect for a longer time than the farmer would have sprayed for = the insect becomes accustomed to the poison and builds up a resistance. 2) The insect being affected may be predatory and this means an infestation of what lies below it on the food chain. 3) The crop could attract other species like butterflies. Monarch butterflies are in the line of fire on this one and there is much debate over Bt-Corn and negative effects on them.

There are 5 high risk crops :

1) Corn (88%)
2) Cotton (90%)
3) Soybean (94%)
4) Sugar beet (95%)
5) Canola (90%)

5 common names for these crops:

1) High-Fructose Corn Syrup
2) Maltodextrin
3) Aspartame
4) Artificial Flavoring
5) Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein

 

Organic: Mouths dropping, big eyes, confused dazed looks, lots of question, those are some of the reactions that follow when I tell people I eat all organic. Treehugger, hippie, environmental activist, those are some of the names that follow; so if you get any of these reactions after changing your lifestyle IT IS TOTALLY NORMAL (: Organic food is simply food that is produced and cared for differently than conventional food. Organic food includes animal welfare, preservation of nature, GMO free and annual inspections occur to ensure these guidelines are met. Organic farming has a $35 billion dollar market and it is increasing! I couldn’t be more excited!

Now, just because an item has this organic label on it doesn’t mean it is necessarily healthy. I know, it seems like you we can never win. Since organic has become so popular there are many popular brands (I won’t mention their names) that are now serving up organic chips, energy drinks, soda & other junk. Let’s just lay a few things down: chips are chips, soda is junk and energy drinks are not good for you. Don’t think with a label, think with your brain and don’t be fooled! Choose whole foods that are fresh, local and without a ingredients label!

 

Fair Trade: So, this is one of the labels that I look for in products beyond food. Whether it be clothes, jewelry or shampoo it is important to keep an eye out for this one. The fair trade seal lets consumers know that their product has been ethically sourced. No child slavery or forced labor was involved in getting the product to you. Fair wages, reasonable hours and fair prices are all factors included in fair trade products. The party that labels also makes sure that there are safe working conditions and equal employment opportunities. Solid relationships are built between the Fair Trade Organizations and the consumers; that is just awesome in my opinion!

Brands that I trust: Alter Eco, Patagonia, Athleta, Prana, Hope Foods, Nutiva, Clear Kombucha, REBBL, Nada Moo, Coco Kind, Nib More, Lundberg, Eating Evolved, Simple Mills & many many more!

So this is a lot of information and I could literally go on for pages and pages but I don’t want anyone getting overwhelmed. The more you visit the blog the more information you will soak up! I can’t wait to meet again.

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2 thoughts on “Navigating GMO, Organic & Fair Trade.

  1. Ashley, I really love the information you share. You have made an impact on my life. I have been slowly changing the foods I eat and becoming more aware of products that I buy.
    Thank you.

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