Concerned with all the chemicals that could be in the products that you wash your children with or the clothes they wear, then go Organic
Whether you choose to go organic just in the food you consume, the products you use or you choose to journey down the whole organic path the benefits of going organic are huge not just for you and your family, but for the planet.
What is Organic?
Organic products that have been certified are either grown or made out of products that have been grown with out synthetic chemicals and fertilisers and aren't genetically modified. Sustainable farming methods are employed so nutrients aren't drained from the ground, by rotating crops, using minerals, green manure and compost, and using natural methods of pest control. It takes approximately 3 years for a grower to obtain recognition to be an organic producer.
Benefits of Organic for You and Your Family
Organic products including both food and non food items are subject to strict handling procedures to make sure all steps in the production, preparation and packaging of organic products adhere to certain standards. The quality of all organic products that have been certified is guaranteed.
Organic products just taste and feel better. Organic cotton and other textiles seems to be much softer against your skin as do organic body products such as soaps, cleansers and body lotions and moisturisers. Both also tend to be much milder, making them more suitable to sensitive skin and the delicate supple skin of babies and children.
Organic products are free of harmful chemicals such as organo-phosphates, sodium laurel sulfate (SLS) and its derivatives, parabens, pthalates and other harmful chemicals. The skin is the largest organ of the body and has a huge surface area. Many chemicals are easily absorbed through the skin and go into the blood stream where they can travel around the body. Research has shown that many of the chemicals can cross the barrier in the placenta between mother and baby and are also present in breast milk.
Benefits of Organic for the Plant.
Organic farmers use sustainable farming methods that enhance the earths fertility rather than depleting the soil of essential minerals. Selenium and zinc are minerals that are essential to humans and much of Australia's ancient soil is almost totally depleted of these two minerals. By using green manure, compost and crop rotation farmers are putting nutrients back into the soil.
Organic farming protects our water ways. There is no run off of harmful chemicals into catchment areas of rivers and lakes where the water often travels into the dams for consumption or is used to water other plants.
How do I know if a Product is Organic?
There are several symbols that can be used to recognised products that are certified organic. However there are some products such as bamboo that aren't certified organic but are safe as they are grown wild or farmed without chemicals.
This list is not exhaustive and there are several European and UK symbols that are used too.
Why does Organic Cost More?
Organic products are usually grown and produced in smaller farms, companies and which therefore have a higher cost of production per unit.
The standards that have to be met are much stricter than that of general consumer items so more time and money is spent making sure that these standards are met and items of higher quality are produced.
No chemicals are used in production and therefore farming and producing organic goods tend to be more a lot more labour intensive.
However the short-term additional expense should be weighed against the long term negative effects of choosing products full of chemicals. These chemicals are deemed "safe" by manufacturers as they are below certain levels as set by the government. However while there has been research into safe levels of individual chemicals, there hasn't been alot of research into the compounding effect of having small "safe" doses of the many chemicals. Remember the saying "the whole is greater than the sum of its parts".
So before you reach for the cheap version of a product remember the long term cost of this choice.