‘Natural’ vs ‘Organic’: Are you being Deceived by Food Labels?

ABC News
Beyond The HeadlineFebruary 18, 2014

When walking down the supermarket aisles, you are inundated with buzzy words on packaging, like “natural” or “organic.” But do you really know what those terms mean?

A recent Consumer Reports survey found that a third of those questioned thought “natural” was the same as “organic” — but it turns out, it’s not.

The term “organic” is tightly regulated and means food was produced under approved methods and is free of synthetic fertilizers.

The Food and Drug Administration, however, has no definition for the use of the word “natural.” And although a lot of products use “natural,” that doesn’t mean there aren’t a lot of non-natural ingredients in them.

Though a drink mix that says it has “natural lemonade flavor,” may actually reveal artificial sweeteners and less than 2% natural flavors upon a closer reading of the listed ingredients.

How can consumers get past the marketing, buzz words, and glossy photos on a product’s packaging to find out what’s really inside the package? Only one ways certain, you have to read the product’s ingredient list to find the real answers.