Organic standards vary, but generally include:
- Prohibition of synthetic chemicals, irradiation, sewage sludge, or genetically modified organisms
- Farmland that has been free of the above for a time (in the U.S. it's three years)
- Detailed records of practices used
- Periodic on-site inspections
- USDA-certification for organic meat forbids use of growth hormones, antibiotics, genetically modified feed, or animal by-products in raising the livestock
- Organic eggs are required to come from chickens that are both cage-free and free range
In the United States, for producers to label processed food "organic" it must contain 95% organically grown ingredients; they can use the label "contains organic ingredients" as long as 70% of the ingredients are certified organic.For more information, see what the United States Department of Agriculture has to say.