How can you tell if the food you buy is organic? See this <a href="http://www.ams.usda.gov/nop/FactSheets/CertificationE.html">government USDA factsheet</a> and this <a href="http://www.ams.usda.gov/nop/Consumers/brochure.html">USDA brochure</a>.
multiple studies have proven that organic produce does not necessarily have more vitamins in it than conventionally grown fruits and vegetables. in fact, in some cases the organic produce had less than the non-organic (and in other cases they were equal, and still other cases the organic far outperformed the conventional with nutrient density). the bottom line is, there is no positive correlation between buying organic and being guaranteed a vitamin-packed superfood that far outperforms a conventional food of the same type.
as for organic baked/dry/boxed goods, it all depends on the recipe and ingredients, of course.
my opinion is that organic eating is a way of life that is worth it in the long run, despite the additional cost and hassle of not being able to shop everywhere and buy whatever you want. i eat probably about 90% organically and feel much healthier and better for it.
to the original poster:
the USDA strictly governs the use of the word "organic" on all labeling. any food labeled as such must be third party certified by an agency approved by the USDA to check for organic standards and practices. soil used to grow foods labeled as organic must be verifiably pesticide and chemical fertilizer-free for at least 15 years. if it's not, it cannot meet the govt standards and cannot print the organic label.
as far as how much you can trust the labeling... i'm sure things slip between the cracks in the organic certification process, but that's the case with most anything in this world. you can trust that thousands of people in this country work day and night to make sure the label only goes on foods that provide conclusive evidence or safe organic growing and handling practices.
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