Is "Organic" Meat really Organic? (USA)

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 21, 2012 at 12:50 PM

Right now I'm living in Asia, so it's super easy to get Australian grass fed meat. But as going home gets closer and closer on the calendar, I'm worried about the "organic" label on meat in the super market.

My vegetarian friends have informed me that that just means, basically that the conditions for the animals are the same but they get a window, or there's a tiny pen most can't use. And while they don't shoot the animals up with antibiotics, they still get fed food covered in pesticides. I'm not sure if this is a veggie scare tactic, or 100% truth. I'm not against eating meat, but I am against cruelty to animals and factory farming.

Can anyone point me in the right direction where to get REAL organic, grass fed meat when I make the journey home?



on June 21, 2012
at 12:56 PM

Is a tautology really true?

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3 Answers



on June 21, 2012
at 01:32 PM

Since others have brought up the fact that a local farmer would be ideal, I'll address the lies your "friends" were telling you.

Organic beef requirements:

  • Born and raised on certified organic pasture
  • Never receive antibiotics
  • Never receive growth-promoting hormones
  • Are fed only certified organic grains and grasses
  • Must have unrestricted outdoor access
  • No use of irradiation, sewage sludge, or GMOs



on June 21, 2012
at 12:54 PM

You can't go wrong with finding a local rancher, where ever you end up. www.eatwild.com is a great resource for searching the US looking for quality food locally. The benefit of the local farmer is that in most cases (in my experience) you can tour the facilities, and speak directly with the folks that feed the animals. I've bought meats and veggies from 3-4 vendors referred through EatWild and have always been able to actually see their production processes.

If that's not viable, Slankers is a decent source for mail order meat. US Wellness as well but pricey.


on June 21, 2012
at 01:12 PM

I try to buy meat from local sources as well, but when I'm at the grocery, I can often find meat that has the "certified humanely raised label", so that's an option as well. I don't know what it entails entirely (other than the higher price tag)...could be as bleak still as you describe above...however, I also think there's value in shoing your grocery store that you care about this stuff.

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