In 1990, U.S. Congress passed the Organic Foods Production Act which required the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to establish standards for organic agricultural products. The USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) certifies agricultural products as 100% Organic or Organic (95% or more organic ingredients).
When an agricultural product is certified organic, it means that it has been grown without the use of toxic pesticides and fertilizers. Organic products are minimally processed and do not contain artificial ingredients or preservatives, nor do they contain genetically modified organisms (GMO).
NOP certification protects consumers from unscrupulous business practices and allows consumers to choose truly organic products. As more people learn about the dangers of ingesting toxic pesticides and chemical fertilizers, the popularity of organic products continues to grow. In 2006 alone, total organic sales in the U.S. jumped 21% from the previous year, according to the Organic Trade Association. The popularity of organic products will only continue to rise as more people learn about the importance of living a natural, chemical-free lifestyle.