Is Hydroponic Farming Organic?

Here at Wild Oats we’re all about organics and informing our community on how to nourish their bodies and minds with the best. In most recent news, it’s hydroponic and aquaponic farming, in fact, this alternative method of producing fruits and vegetables has become so popular, Silicon Valley entrepreneurs are pouring their money into it like gold!

Currently, this soil-free produce is considered organic by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, but traditional farmers are rallying together to fight it.

Each side has their own arguments and pros and cons to soil vs. non-soil method of farming, but it all boils down to what is certified organic and what isn’t.

Let’s break it down….

The Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 states: “An organic plant shall contain provisions designed to foster soil fertility, primarily through the management of the organic content of the soil through proper tillage, crop rotation, and manuring.”

Hydroponic Farming: By definition, Hydroponic farming is “a high-tech growing method, where vegetables are grown without soil. The roots of the plants are grown in a nutrient solution or in a medium such as perlite or gravel.”

Pros:

  • Reduces water use – which is quite a large pro when you consider major droughts in the U.S. such as California.
  • Helps the wildly growing demand of organic produce. According to the New York Times – “Sales of organic food in the United States hit $40 billion last year, sending grocers scrambling to find enough organic produce to fill their cases.”

Cons:

  • Proper lighting and nutrient water is expensive.
  • Does not use naturally enriched soil to grow plants instead uses artificial nutrients and grows produce in other forms of substrate such as coconut husks.
  • When buying organic food – people are not told if they are grown in the soil or via hydroponic method.

Organic Farming

According to Organic Farmers everything about Hydroponic Farming is NOT organic, to them, the law is clear – there is no soil and therefore it cannot be organic. As Sam Welsch, chief executive of OneCert, puts it, “There are things the law and regulations require you to do to the soil that you cannot do in a hydroponic system.” Another issue these Farms have is that they claim the U.S.D.A has been illegally allowing this to happen and not informing consumers that when they are buying organic produce, many of the items are actually being grown in green houses and not in soil.

What are your thoughts? We would love to know, share with us in the comments section below.

To learn more: What’s Organic? A Debate Over Dirt May Boil Down to Turf

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Five Thanksgiving Sides Dishes You Need to Try

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and although the talk is all about Turkey, sides might be my favorite part of the entire meal. While on the hunt for some new favorite side dishes, I found these delicious recipes that I had to share with you all!

Five Thanksgiving Sides Dishes You Need to Try:

  1. Creamy Mashed Cauliflower – from Deliciously Organic

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2. Sweet Potato Pie Bites – from The Nutritionist Reviews

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3. Balsamic Roasted Brussel Sprouts With Grapes & Figs – from Abbey’s Kitchen

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4. Gourmet Green Bean Casserole with Bacon, Gruyere and Caramelized Onions – from Baker by Nature

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5. Crock Pot Stuffing with Wild Rice Cranberries and Almonds – from Well Plated by Erin

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Wild Oats Announces Next Step in Affordable Organics Movement

First off, we would like to extend our heartfelt appreciation to our amazing customers for their ongoing support as we continue to lead the effort to make affordable organics available to all.

As many of you know, Wild Oats has long been a pioneer in the natural and organic foods industry having introduced the brand back in 1987—before it was mainstream to talk about the health and wellness benefits of everyday foods.

When we re-launched the brand two years ago we sought to do something that was previously thought impossible—lower prices to make certified organic products more accessible to the masses. Through our initial strategic partnership, we were not only able to exceed our sales expectations, but also develop the tools and learning needed to take the Wild Oats brand to the next level.

Now, we are ready for the next phase of our plan, which is to expand the line to multiple retailers and bring more exciting and inventive products to market. Please stay in touch with us by joining our eNewsletter to keep up on exciting new developments at Wild Oats.

We can’t wait to show you what’s next!

—The Wild Oats Team

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