© Field Fayre - The Organic Store 2013

How to recognise certified organic food & drink

The word "organic" is one that is strictly defined by law, and may only be used by producers and manufacturers who are registered with a recognised organic accreditation organisation. Organic certification mainly applies to food products at present. In order to become registered, members must:  follow a strict set of guidelines laid down by national and international law; keep thorough and accurate records of production processes ; submit to annual and random inspections.

Organic foods must meet EU standards with regard to the materials used in packaging and labeling. Materials must be recyclable, where possible, and carry the appropriate organic accreditation symbol. In addition, although it is not a legal requirement, organic products should strive to avoid all unnecessary packaging.

How do you know if something is organic?

Organic standards are enforced by organic certification authorities. If in doubt, check the packaging and look for a logo belonging to one or other of these authorities or by the EU license code number printed on the packaging (see below).

The most widely used are Soil Association, Organic Farmers & Growers and Demeter.  Also look out for the green EU organic ‘Euroleaf’ symbol, that all European producers need to have on their packaging now.

All suppliers must be licensed in order to use the word "organic" in the product title. The term "organic" is a legally recognised term, the use of which is governed by trading standards legislation. The
principles can be briefly summarised as follows:

If you are buying food that is not packaged, but that is still called "organic" on the shop shelf, loose apples for example, the shop must be able to show you proof of organic certification if you ask for it.  Field Fayre, here in Ross-on-Wye is a Soil Association certified Licensee.

Note: Food Certification (Scotland) Ltd provides organic certification for farmed salmon in the UK. While UK regulations permit local certification, EC regulations do not yet address organic fish farming.

The UK code numbers are:


UK2    Organic Farmers and Growers (OF&G)

UK3    Scottish Organic Producers' Association (SOPA)

UK4    Organic Food Federation (OFF)

UK5    Soil Association Certification Ltd (SA Cert)

UK6    Demeter / Bio-Dynamic Agriculture Association (BDAA)

UK7    Irish Organic Farmers' & Growers' Association (IOFGA)

UK8    Food Certification (Scotland) Ltd

UK9    Organic Trust Ltd

UK10  CMi Certification

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