Sunday, March 25, 2012

What Does Organic Mean to You?

What do you expect from food that is labeled organic? Pesticide free? Responsible stewardship of the land? The certified organic label may not meet your expectations.

Paul Kaiser, of Singing Frogs Farm in Sebastopol, California, explains why. I met Kaiser, or Farmer Paul, as he is known locally, at the 2012 EcoFarm Conference where we talked about saving bees, creating earth-friendly farms, and the misuse of the terms organically grown and sustainable agriculture.

Going Beyond Organic

Kaiser wants to ask consumers, “what does organic mean to you?”

He pointed me to an essay he wrote on the subject and gave me permission to share some of his thoughts from that piece.

Photo: courtesy of Paul Kaiser


  1. I read the article - it was very good. "Organic" has been twisted into something other than it should be. Why are we exchanging one big factory farm system for another? That's where we're headed if we're not careful.

  2. Hi Michelle- thanks for your comment. Yes, unfortunately it seems if we're not paying attention, we can end up getting snowed. It pays to try to really be on top of the details.

  3. I want to add that if you read Farmer Paul's essay, he does agree that certified organic methods have reduced the use of herbicides and pesticides, and other undesirable impacts. But their practices may not not friendly to the ecosystem as a whole, especially large scale producers.

    That's where we want to look into sustainable practices that take the entire ecosystem into account, and beyond that, to include the local community's best interests.

  4. Really enjoyed the education in Farmer Paul's article. Thanks for re-posting.

  5. You are very welcome! Paul and his wife are very hard working people doing what they believe in. I'm happy to give them a voice...


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