Go for the USDA Certified label.
Organic food is produced without pesticides or chemical additives. Polls show that nearly half of today’s shoppers prefer organic over conventional, and are more likely to pay top dollar for it. Producers are catching on to these shifts in preference, and there are now 19 third-party organic labeling schemes across the country.
Though not perfect, the USDA labeling system is the most trusted of the bunch. It puts farmers through a tedious, and oftentimes expensive, certification process that tests factors like soil quality, pest control, and animal-raising practices.
But remember that there are varying degrees of organic products.
Unfortunately, a USDA Certified Organic label doesn’t ensure that food is completely free of chemical additives. It actually means that 95-99 percent of a product (by weight) has been certified organic. A “Made With Organic Ingredients” seal means that a product is made with at least 70 percent organic ingredients. The only way to be sure you’re completely steering clear of potentially harmful pesticides is to buy products that have a “100% USDA Certified Organic” seal.