How Seemingly Simple Labelling Terminology Can Be Misleading
When you first begin shopping for all-natural baby products differentiating between organic and natural product labels can be tricky. These days, it feels as if manufactures use these two names interchangeably. Basically, all-natural and organic have become marketing buzzwords used to make products appeal more to eco-friendly consumers. However, truly all-natural products as well as truly organic products have some very specific differences that are important for consumers to note.
In order for a product to be certified organic it must contain at least 95% organically produced and processed substances. Some labels will read a specific percentage of how much organic content is contained within. Any product on the market that contains less then 70% organic materials can not be organically certified, however the manufacture may try to trick you by placing a label that reads 70% Organic on the packaging.
This is just one reason why you have to be careful when choosing products for your family. I’ve said it once I will say it at least a hundred more times: READ THE INGRIEDIENTS.
Unlike organic food and produce items cannot be certified all natural by any regulatory system. Basically, if the word “natural” is placed on a product, then the ingredients list must also specify how exactly the product is natural. It may read something like: “manufactured from all natural substances” or “no artificial preservatives.” With truly natural labels these things MUST BE CLARIFIED BY THE MANUFACTURE.
You have to be careful here because a product could be all-natural in one way, but not all natural in another. For example it may not contain preservatives but this doesn’t mean that the ingredients listed are also naturally occurring in nature.
Clarifying Organic Vs. Natural
It may now feel as if a simple matter has now been over-complicated. However if you go off of the authentic ingredients listing instead of the marketing on the packaging of the product you can easily decipher whether or not a product is organic or all-natural by following one simple rule of thumb.
If it is extracted from a plant or the earth produced and then processed to become a useable substance, then it is ORGANIC. (Think Oils, like petroleum) If it is naturally occurring in nature, extracted, and used in its natural form it is ALL-NATURAL. (Think Minerals, like Zinc)
As you do you get in the habit of critically examining the ingredients list of your baby products you will begin to learn common names for both organic and natural ingredients and it won’t feel like such a guessing game. I try to stay away from products that have lengthy ingredient lists, or long listings full of substances that I am not familiar with. “If you don’t know just what it is…don’t put it on your baby!”
Brandie Peters is a full time blogger from Medicine Hat Alberta, Canada. She is a self-described baby wrangling; wifey badger who enjoys walks with her rescue dog Aspen and taking care of her son Jackson who is now 16months old.
She has been using only all natural baby products for a year and half now.