|Source: Food Tech Connect|
Since this is a multi-billion dollar industry today, we want our learners to know what it means to be organic, whether it is safer to eat, what are the nutrition facts, and how to read food labels. The motion graphic What Is Organic Food from Epipheo is a good resource to start with to help students understand organic foods and, more importantly, that just because something is organic, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s good for you, healthy, or nutritious.
As the video points out, organic chicken nuggets, mac ‘n cheese, or sandwich cookies can still be considered “junk food” without pesticides. It is how the food is created, prepared or raised without chemicals, genetically modified organisms, or radiation in the process. These are just a few examples. In other words, it doesn’t necessarily mean that ingredients are nutritious, just that the ingredients are organic.
|Source: Foododdity (detail)|
|Source: USDA Organic Progra|
Marketing and packaging of food is no different from any other industry trying to sell its products. A little media literacy goes a long way in helping kids, and adults, make healthy choices. The Mayo Clinic’s page on nutrition and healthy eating gives a short overview of the real difference between organic foods and their traditional counterparts as to nutrition, safety and price. It makes a point that “organic” is not interchangeable with “natural.” Other terms that can also be misleading to consumers are “all natural,” “free range,” or “hormone-free.” These products are not organic.
Lastly, many consumers, let alone kids, are not aware of what those little stickers mean on every piece of produce we purchase. They are called “price look up codes," or PLUs. However annoying these little stickers might be, they provide valuable information about the food we're buying. So it makes sense to help students know what these numbers mean. The simple graphic called “Learn Your Labels” explains it all. If the produce is organic, the five digit code starts with a 9, if it is a genetically modified organism (GMO) an 8, and if it is conventionally grown a 4.
|Source: Royal Hawaiian Orchards|
For other infographics, please take a look at: