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What Is Organic Milk? Is It Healthier?
Organic milk is just one of many options in the dairy case to fit different lifestyles and personal preferences. Having more choices makes it easy for people to meet the government's dietary recommendations for three servings of milk and milk products a day.
How is "organic" defined?
According to USDA's standards, milk and milk products can be labeled "organic" if the milk is from cows that have been exclusively fed organic feed, are kept in pens with adequate space, are allowed periodic access to the outdoors and direct sunlight, are not treated with synthetic hormones and are not given certain medications to treat illness. Organic classification is not a judgment about the quality or safety of any product. As with all organic foods, it's the process that makes milk organic, not the final product.
Is organic milk more nutritious than regular milk?
No, both types of milk are equally nutritious. Carton to carton, bottle to bottle, organic and regular milk contain the same unique package of nutrients that makes dairy products an important part of a healthy diet. Just check the nutrition facts label and you'll see that each 8-ounce serving of milk offers the same amount of nine essential nutrients, including calcium, vitamin D and potassium.
Is organic milk safer than regular milk?
No. All milk must comply with very stringent safety standards and is among the most highly regulated and safest foods on the shelf. While organic dairy farmers use only organic fertilizers and organic pesticides, and their cows are not given supplemental hormones, the milk itself is identical to the milk produced conventionally. Stringent government standards that include testing all types of milk for antibiotic and pesticide residues ensure that both organic milk and conventional milk are pure, safe and nutritious.
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