Organic foods have exploded in popularity over the last two decades.
In fact, US consumers spent $39.1 billion on organic produce in 2014 (1).
The popularity does not seem to be slowing down, as sales increased by more than 11% from 2014 to 2015 (1).
Many people think organic food is safer, healthier and tastier than regular food (2).
Others say it’s better for the environment and the well-being of animals.
This article objectively compares organic and non-organic foods, including their nutrient content and effects on human health.
The term “organic” refers to the process of how certain foods are produced.
Organic foods have been grown or farmed without the use of artificial chemicals, hormones, antibiotics or genetically modified organisms.
In order to be labelled organic, a food product must be free of artificial food additives.
This includes artificial sweeteners, preservatives, coloring, flavoring and monosodium glutamate (MSG).
Organically grown crops tend to use natural fertilizers like manure to improve plant growth. Animals raised organically are also not given antibiotics or hormones.
Organic farming tends to improve soil quality and the conservation of groundwater. It also reduces pollution and may be better for the environment.
The most commonly purchased organic foods are fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy products and meat. Nowadays there are also many processed organic products available, such as sodas, cookies and breakfast cereals.