Organic food production works with nature and includes techniques to avoid artificial chemical products, preserve water and air quality, enhance soil and biodiversity, and ensure humane animal treatment.
Organic farms must be inspected and certified to ensure that they are following the Canada Organic Standard. Organic processors are inspected to ensure that they separate organic food from non-organic food and don’t use artificial colours, additives or preservatives.
Look for the Canada Organic Logo or ask to see the farmer's organic production certificate to ensure that food you buy has been certified as organic.
General Principles of Organic Production
There are 7 principles that inform the Canadian Organic Standards:
Protect the environment, minimize soil degradation and erosion, decrease pollution, optimize biological productivity and support a sound state of health.
Maintain long-term soil fertility by optimizing conditions for biological activity within the soil.
Maintain biological diversity within the system.
Recycle materials and resources to the greatest extent possible within the enterprise.
Provide attentive care that promotes the health and behavioral needs of livestock.
Prepare organic products, emphasizing careful processing and handling methods in order to maintain the organic integrity and vital qualities of the products at all stages of production.
Rely on renewable resources in locally organized agricultural systems.
The Canadian Organic Standards
CAN/CGSB-32.310-2006, Amended October 2008, December 2009, June 2011
CAN/CGSB-32.311-2006, Amended October 2008, December 2009, June 2011
Developed by the Organic Value Chain Roundtable