Bio products vs. Organic products: main differences
The fashion of organic products and their benefits for health has flooded supermarkets, recipes and our own kitchens. Much has been said about them, but do you really know the difference between these organic options and bio products? Each of them has different properties and benefits. We are going to help you discover all of them so you can choose what is best for you and your lifestyle.
We worry more and more about knowing what we eat: the additives, the crop location, the nutrients … The media, Internet and our own curiosity have dealt with this, and we feel more and more respect for and interest in food. This is why, according to the report The Green Revolution, in recent times, diets such as the vegan or vegetarian have gained so many adepts, which has triggered a strong rise in the sale of organic products. These are attributed very many benefits, some real and others not so much.
What do we call organic products?
According to the World Health Organisation , these foods are those that have been produced traditionally and sustainably, without using chemical products or being genetically modified. For all of this, these ecological products are more respectful of the environment and more natural when consumed. Spain is one of the main producers of this kind of organic food thanks to the richness of our land and climate.
Although it might seem otherwise, it is ever simpler to buy organic food. In addition to the Internet, with a multitude of online stores, organic products have now reached the shelves of a large part of the big supermarkets. Two stand out:
- Organic products in Aldi: this store has an enormous selection, from milks and dairy products to delicatessen, preserves and legumes. Here you will find an enormous section devoted exclusively to organic food.
- Mercadona Organic products: although Hacendado’s main strength are gluten-free products, the brand is now opening to other markets with potential such as that of organic food. Eggs, meat and dairy products of organic origin now fill some of its shelves.
These kinds of products are attributed the false benefit of being healthier for our diet. But is it true? According to studies of the consumers organisation they do not contain fewer toxins than processed products, they have no more nutritive properties nor are better than the conventional products. Simply they are cultivated and produced in respect of nature and in a way less aggressive on the environment.
What are biological products?
According to European regulations, both names are synonyms. The Organisation of Consumers and Users talks about a question of language: ecological (or organic) in Spanish and biological in French. However, it is us, the consumers of bio products, who have traced out distinctions. Therefore, to practical effects bio food is that which cares for the environment but which also respects the natural genetic process of the species, their reproductive cycles and biodiversity.
It is more complicated to find bio products than it is organic products, as their production is much more expensive, which affects demand and the end price. One example: half a kilo of non-transgenic wheat pasta can cost a euro more than a no name package in any supermarket.
Therefore the online bio products are better known, there are a multitude of websites that market them, although there are also supermarkets like Lidl in which they are well distinguished, and even specialised chains like Supersano. One of their most powerful market niches are bio products for babies, because the respectable and organic decisions have more weight here.
Difference between bio products and organic products
In short, any product accompanied by the adjective “eco” (organic) or “bio” is synonymous and refers to those foods which have not been treated chemically, which have been grown in respect of nature and have not been genetically modified. This is what is determined by regulation 834/2007 of Brussels. Therefore their differences occur on the subjective level of the consumer, in accordance with our perceptions. So what do we understand when we talk about organic or bio products?
Bio products are perceived as something more natural, more nutritive and beneficial for health. At the same time, organic products are those of a more environmental and respectful nature. However, this is not entirely correct and has given rise to many false myths around this kind of eating.
- That they are waste free: this statement is not entirely true. Although organic products have been cultivated or bred naturally and without chemical pesticides, it is impossible for them to be completely clean. To start with, because the use of natural pesticides is contemplated. To this we can add the pollution we find in the water, air and the rain. Therefore for a product to be completely clean, it would have to be bred in a bubble.
- That they are richer in nutrients: This is not true either. Numerous studies affirm that when conventional and organic products are compared, the results are very similar. The levels of vitamins or nutrients do not vary substantially, although the presence of potentially harmful chemical elements does.
In short, the most powerful reasons for consuming bio foods are sustainability and the avoidance of chemical and artificial components in our food. It is not because they are healthier or because they are better quality, but rather because they respect the environment more effectively.
If you feel aware of this and want to start to introduce these kinds of foods in your diet, you must always look for the stamp of authenticity of the product and of the certifier in the country of origin. You will help to take care of the planet where we live and at the same time you will enjoy proximity food with authentic flavour and aroma. What will your final verdict be?