Food Lingo 101

"Organic" Defined
Agencies, Accreditations...Acronyms
Product Packaging Attributes Explained
Additional Resources


Woodstock follows the definition presented by the NOSB in April of 1995 in Orlando, FL. The NOSB is the National Organic Standards Board. QAI is Woodstock’s certifying agency. The definition reads as follows:

"Organic agriculture is an ecological production management system that promotes and enhances biodiversity, biological cycles and soil biological activity. It is based on minimal use of off-farm inputs and on management practices that restore, maintain and enhance ecological harmony.

‘Organic’ is a labeling term that denotes products produced under the authority of the Organic Foods Production Act. The principal guidelines for organic production are to use materials and practices that enhance the ecological balance of natural systems and that integrate the parts of the farming system into an ecological whole.

Organic agriculture practices cannot ensure that products are completely free of residues; however, methods are used to minimize pollution from air, soil and water.

Organic food handlers, processors and retailers adhere to standards that maintain the integrity of organic agricultural products. The primary goal of organic agriculture is to optimize the health and productivity of interdependent communities of soil life, plants, animals and people."

Certified Organic Certified Organic means that a nonprofit, state or private certification organization, accredited by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), has verified that products labeled as "organic" meet the strictly defined organic standards. Woodstock enlists the services of QAI to certify our organic products. QAI certifies to the USDA NOP guidelines.

Certified Organic Packaging Claims 100% Organic - Products labeled as “100 percent organic” must contain (excluding water and salt) only organically produced ingredients and processing aids. These products may feature the USDA Organic seal on its packaging.

Organic - Products labeled “organic” must consist of at least 95 percent organically produced ingredients (excluding water and salt). Any remaining product ingredients must consist of nonagricultural substances approved on the National List including specific non-organically produced agricultural products that are not commercially available in organic form. These products may feature the USDA Organic seal on its packaging.

Made With Organic - Processed products that contain at least 70 percent organic ingredients can use the phrase “made with organic ingredients” and list up to three of the organic ingredients or food groups on the principal display panel. The USDA seal is not permitted on the packaging.

The relationship between Organic and Non-GMO Buying organic foods offers some assurance against the risks of genetic engineering because GM substances are prohibited in organic production. There are external factors, such as drifting, that could cause contamination of an organic crop, therefore Woodstock also enrolls its products for Non-GMO Verification with the Non-GMO Project.

Agencies and Accreditations

FDA – Food and Drug Administration is responsible for protecting the public health by assuring the safety, efficacy and security of human and veterinary drugs, biological products, medical devices, our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, and products that emit radiation

Non-GMO Project – The Non-GMO Project is a non-profit organization, created by leaders representing all sectors of the organic and natural products industry in the U.S. and Canada, to offer consumers a consistent non-GMO choice for organic and natural products that are produced without genetic engineering or recombinant DNA technologies

Non-GMO Project Verified – The Non-GMO Project has reviewed all information required regarding a product and has verified that it does not contain GMOs. At this time the packaging may feature the Non-GMO Project Verified seal.

NOP – The National Organic Program develops, implements, and administers national production, handling, and labeling standards.

OFPA – The Organic Foods Production Act passed in 1990 requiring the U.S Department of Agriculture to develop national standards for organically produced agricultural products to assure consumers that agricultural products marketed as organic meet consistent, uniform standards.

OTA – Organic Trade Association is a membership-based business association for the organic industry in North America whose mission is to promote and protect organic trade to benefit the environment, farmers, the public, and the economy.

QAI – Quality Assurance International is a leading USDA-accredited organic product-certifying agency.

USDA – United States Department of Agriculture

Product and Packaging Attributes

Allergens – Any substance causing an allergic reaction. The top eight food allergens are Milk, Eggs, Fish, Shellfish, Tree Nuts, Peanuts, Wheat, and Soybeans.

BPA - Bisphenol A is a chemical building block that is used primarily to make polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins used frequently in food packaging. There are concerns regarding BPA to human health.

BPA Free – Packaging that does not contain BPA.

Dairy Free – Foods containing no dairy.

Gluten Free – There is no official food labeling definition but gluten free refers to any food that is not derived from wheat, rye, and barley.

Kosher - food that has been prepared so that it is fit and suitable under Jewish law

Low Sodium – A food with 140 mg or less per RACC (Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed.) Learn More >>

Peanut Free – Foods containing no peanuts.

Reduced Sodium - At least 25% less sodium per RACC than an appropriate reference food (or for meals and main dishes, at least 25% less sodium per 100g) Learn More >>

Vegan – Related to food consumption, a vegan is somebody who does not eat meat, fish, dairy products, or eggs.

Vegetarian – Related to food consumption, a vegetarian is somebody who eats vegetables, fruits, grains, seeds, and usually eggs and dairy products, but not meat or fish.

Learn more


Non-GMO Project -