A: By definition YES there is a difference. The governments definition of all natural is like this:
Beef that is labeled “natural” is most likely from companies that are marketing Natural Beef but are emphasizing restrictions on types of feed and/or the use of pesticides, antibiotics and growth hormones. All fresh beef is natural according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) definition of Natural Beef as “minimally processed containing no additives.” All fresh beef found in the meat case that does not have an ingredient label (a label is added if the product includes a marinade or solution) is Natural.
As long as the animal has had nothing added to it AFTER processing than we can call it all natural. For example…many chickens have a solution added to them after processing to enhance the flavor. This is not natural but take out the solution and WAH-LAH you have a natural chicken according to the government. Organic is defined as NOTHING ADDED BEFORE OR AFTER PROCESSING EVER and furthermore the feed the animal is fed is the same way, no chemicals or pesticides ever and Organic has a much more defined outline of strict regulations. Having said all that here is where bureaucracy can mess things up and we the people can fix it! The government wants their hands in everything and rightly so when it comes to safe food practices, so to legally call a product Organic the farmer has to pay the government and or certification companies who report to the USDA to certify that it is truly organic thus passing that higher price on to you and it does not end their as to why the cost of organic is so high: See last question for some cost explanations. The key here is to buy REAL All-NATURAL PRODUCT! Real All-Natural product can be exactly the same thing as Organic but does not carry the government certification. Instead the producers make the product traceable from conception to sold-product and every animal/product is vegetarian fed with chemical free foods and never given antibodies or growth hormones etc. This is called All-Natural. For example; Our chickens are fed a certified organic diet and contain no additives and are cage free but we call them Natural since they do not have the certification from the USDA as Organic.
A: If you are a web savvy person this will be easily checked out by doing some research. Also it helps to by brand names you have come to know and trust.
A: Why its true large companies have the advantage of “Economies of Scale” allowing them to sale at the lowest possible prices the same thing can be said for small companies that are managed correctly. For instance, We do not have hundreds of employees with benefits to pay. We are family owned and operated. We do not have a large overhead in advertising and building cost. And we are not trying to get rich… we just want to live a comfortable lifestyle like you. Their are a list of other factors that allow us to operate in this manner.
A: Much of it is 100% great stuff, and some of it is….well… the governments version of natural. If your not sure and cannot find out…just drop us an email with the product you want to know about and we will let you know if its the real thing or not. We will be happy to research it for you.
A: Thats a broad question. We can address a few issues quickly. First the local producer cannot meet the demands of a retail establishment in many cases. Also in order to carry product for resale in Oklahoma there are many regulations required by law for the local producer to meet, and since many local producers are small companies they cannot meet the demands of the laws and regulations nor the insurance required to sale their products to retailers. Another VERY IMPORTANT factor is this. Many local producers take pride in what they do and refuse to sell that product to “Big Business” who cares less about them and that product but is simply after a dollar. Also much of the products produced by locals are seasonal only.
A: Right here! Keep in mind these items can be very costly and some items may require a deposit if we do not currently have it in stock.
A: The usual answer to your question from organic proponents is: organic isn’t expensive, conventional is unrealistically cheap. Not that helpful, but it’s true.
In the United States, a very small percentage of income goes toward purchasing food: less than 10 percent in 2004, compared with 23 percent in 1929 (and 24 percent in modern Mexico). You probably know that the federal and state governments heavily participate in and financially support U.S. agricultural production. I’ve been told this is a legacy of the Depression. Prices for our food are low and consistent because of strong government involvement in the form of subsidies, grants, paying not to produce, buying surplus, supporting technological development, and tax incentives. Look back at scintillating discussion of oil subsidies, which describes the various ways government can ease the path of any industry. We pay twice for our food: once to the IRS and once at the supermarket. In short, the cheapness of food is a delusion.
Organic agriculture, by and large, has not received and does not receive the same amount of governmental support as conventional. Organic accounts for about 2 percent of total food sales in the United States. Many organic farms are too small to participate in government programs aimed at huge operations, and their diverse crops don’t qualify for support aimed at monolithic growers of corn and such.
Inherent aspects of organic farming are simply costly: chemical fertilizers are great on a huge farm, because you can just add them to the irrigation system. With organic, the “inputs” — the prices of labor, fertilizer, pest management, seed, baby animals — are in most cases more expensive than for conventional products. Imagine the difference in cost to the farmer: adding gallons of liquid to the irrigation pipes versus buying and applying tons of compost using human labor.
I will finally say that organic food purveyors — not farmers, but middlemen and groceries — are happy to take advantage of the laws of capitalism. Charge as much as you can get.
So there you go. Organic food is more expensive because it costs more to produce, has less support from the government, supply is less than demand, and in general we pay the true cost of food when we buy organic. When we buy conventional, we pay the fake cost of food.