What Do Food Labels Really Mean?

NPR breaks down all the confusing labels at the grocery store, like what’s the difference between “all natural” and “organic”?

  • Beware of ill-defined labels. It’s easy to call food “natural” or “sustainable,” because there’s no legal standard for what those words mean.
  • An “organic” label does have a clear meaning, and it’s enforced. Organic food delivers environmental benefits, but the food itself may not be better for you.
  • “Non-GMO” is not organic. The food was still grown with pesticides.
  • If you want to be sure that your milk or eggs come from animals that got to live outdoors, look for a third party on the label, such as Animal Welfare Approved or American Grassfed Association — or organic.
  • “Fair Trade” products deliver a little extra money to small farmers who are organized into cooperatives.
  • Don’t let labels stress you out. When it comes to solving the world’s problems, your shopping decisions aren’t nearly as important as political decisions.

Find the link to the full article here, and listen on Apple Podcasts here.

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