Organic September 2021
Search Awareness Days
What is Organic September?
Organic September is a month-long British campaign taking place in September every year.
Organised by the Soil Association it aims to encourage more people to try organic food, products and services as a way to promote and educate people about organic food and farming practices that have a positive effect on the climate and environment.
The campaign is about trying something new, something different, making changes to our shopping habits and buying organic food and products whether it’s food, cosmetics, clothing, having a meal out or even taking an environmentally friendly holiday (I’m not sure if that includes a plane trip – answers on a postcard).
Their website is full of information about the different choices you can make, retailers selling organically certified products, and the certification itself.
As they rightly say themselves:
In the face of climate change, diet related ill-health and widespread decline in wildlife, the need to change our food systems has never been greater.
Organic September is a month-long campaign to raise awareness of the many benefits of organic food and farming, which include:
- Supporting biodiversity and wildlife
- Helping to combat climate change
- The highest standards of animal welfare
- Reduced exposure to pesticides
- Food as it should be, and food you can trust
Organic products are better for the land, the soils in which much of our food originates, farm animals, and the whole supply chain from packaging to delivery and the channel in which they’re sold.
What is Organic Food and Organic Farming?
There are several principles of ‘going organic’ which mean fewer pesticides, no artificial colours and preservatives, always free range, no routine use of antibiotics, making it better for our wildlife , better for the planet, it being nutritionally different, and there being no genetically modified ingredients.
Organic farming aims to farm land in the most natural way without the use of artificial additives to either land or livestock thus limit its impact on the environment. This applies to all actions and inputs from the use of energy, to the maintenance of biodiversity, the preservation of ecological balances, the enhancement of soil fertility, and the maintenance of water quality.
The Soil Association describes organic farming as placing a strong emphasis on wildlife and the environment and cutting the use of pesticides and antibiotics. Strict regulations, known as organic standards, define what organic farmers can and cannot do. All organic food and drink sold in the EU must meet the EU Organic Regulation – shown by the green leaf logo on the pack.
The Soil Association Certification is the UK’s largest and oldest certification body. For a food product to be labelled as organic by the Association, every organisation working up and down its supply chain – from farmers, to packers, to food processors, and organic retailers – have to meet organic standards and prove it to an organic certification body. They’re then able to use the certification logo.
Organic Food & Farming Statistics and Facts
According to the British government organic farming statistics in 2018 were as follows:
- There were 474,000 hectares of farmed land in the UK
- 70% of UK organic land is accounted for by permanent grassland
- 8% of the total UK organic area is used to grow cereals
- 61% of the total UK organic area is in England
- 3.3% of the total UK cattle population is reared organically
- There are 6,200 organic operators in the UK
Buying Organic Cosmetics
Going organic is not just about eating more naturally grown food. We can also choose organic cosmetics which have gained the Association’s cosmetic certification and passed the test in use of ingredients, formulation processes, premises and packaging.
The Soil Association lists products as attaining the certification mark. Click here.
The following retailers sell products labelled as organic:
Buying Organic Food Recipes
There are literally oodles and oodles of organic recipes available for you to try. Whether you’re new to going organic, trying something new for a dinner party, trying to impress the kids (!) or you’re a dab hand already, the resources below will be a fun read:
Online Organic Food Retailers
Need to buy organic ingredient? Why not check out some of these retailers: