What is “Natural” Food?

One in four new products launched in 2010 had a label claiming it was “Natural”. But did you know that there is no regulatory definition for “Natural” foods? While there are strict standards for Organic labeling, it’s pretty much a wild west when it comes to the use of the word Natural.

Hence you can find chips made from “all natural potatoes”. Has anyone ever seen an artificial potato?

And does natural even mean healthy? sugar is natural, so is butter.

Consumers have caught on to this labeling trend and don’t like it. According to Food Navigator:

Consumers on the lookout for eco-friendly claims are skeptical about the term ‘natural’, and two-thirds would favor a uniform standard to certify natural claims, according to a new survey.

The poll, from natural and organic marketing firm Mango Sprouts Marketing, asked 1,000 natural product consumers about their organic shopping habits in an effort to get an idea of upcoming trends for the sector in 2011.

What to do at the supermarket:

Skip the claims on food labels and head straight to the nutrition fact and ingredient list. That’s where you’ll find the informaton you really need.

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  • http://www.visualsuperglue.com matt gordon

    i am glad that you posted such a succinct message. while it is a clever strategy there is no content to the natural name. i hope that people dont purchase it based on hype. secondly, the no msg is painful to see. this urban myth has been laid to rest by so many people but marketing departments wont let it die.

  • J in VA

    @matt gordon

    Are you saying that msg is harmless?

  • http://ithinkitneedsmoreturbinado.blogspot.com/ s.l. menz

    @J in VA
    Most companies just label it under a different name. That’s why I’m guessing Matt says its painful to see.

  • http://raspberriesandtrumpets.blogspot.com Miss Anne

    Favourite add for canned soup here in Australia had the tag line “made with real ingredients”. The mind boggles as to what kind of soup is made with unreal ingredients!

  • Chris Archer

    Hey guys what’s up I have all the yummy stuff