Day 2

Organic

SPONSORED BY NATRACARE

OVERVIEW

“When we demand organic, we are demanding poison-free food. We are demanding clean air. We are demanding pure, fresh water. We are demanding soil that is free to do its joband seeds that are free of toxins. We are demanding that our children be protected from harm. We all need to bite the bullet and do what needs to be done— buy organic whenever we can, insist on organic, fight for organic and work to make it the norm.” ~ Maria Rodale (Organic Manifesto: How Organic Farming Can Heal Our Planet, Feed the World and Keep Us Safe)

Every time you make a purchase, you cast a vote with your dollars – a vote that has the power to lessen impact on people and planet. All it takes is becoming informed, shifting habits and practices, which can be as simple as buying a piece of certified organic produce, today for example.

But what exactly does the term “certified organic” mean, and why should you care? At the most basic level, “certified organic” means that a product was produced without harm to soil, water, air, humans and all species –– promoting ecological health and biodiversity. Certified organic goods must meet specific production requirements as outlined by national organic programs and independent certifiers.

Buying certified organic also means you’re supporting the farmers and businesses that are placing human (that’s you, the consumer) and environmental health first. But how? Take an apple for example. The average conventionally grown apple has about 47 pesticide residues on its surface, many of which are known or probable human carcinogens (substances capable of causing cancer in living tissue). When you opt for organic, however, whether it’s in the form of food or textiles, you’re actually reducing your exposure to harmful pesticide residues.

With more than 50% of millennials and centennials buying organic, our generation is leading the charge in expanding organic purchasing, which means big businesses are doing a major rethink. In fact, EcoWatch reports that our decision to buy organic is actually shifting markets globally.

Remember, as a consumer, you vote with your dollar. With every certified organic purchase you make, you have the power to support responsibly produced goods. For more information and inspiration, check out Natracare’s video on “5 Fantastic Facts About Cotton”, The Organic Center’s factsheet on the “Top 12 Reasons to Go Organic” and Friends of the Earth’s new report on “Farming for the Future”.

Check out today’s GOOD READ from EcoWatch.

Together, with our partners, Natracare, The Organic Center, and Friends of the Earth, we believe that every step we take in the right direction makes a difference in strengthening communities, personal health, environmental impact, and commitment to one another, and thus our collective future.

CHALLENGE

Green

20 POINTS

Think

Product labels are really important. They were created to help you better understand what you buy, consume, and put into or onto your body. But with all of the hype out there, sometimes it’s hard to decipher if the label is really telling the true story. If you understand what the labels mean, then you’ll also learn a lot about a company’s ethics, integrity, and values. Having a USDA organic certification holds a third party accountable for ensuring that ethical business practices are being adhered to and that there is oversight and enforcement

Challenge

  • Find the most common organic certification in your country.
    • What are three requirements that producers must meet to be certified organic?
    • Which do you think is most important and why?
  • Find two recent studies about organics and share two facts from each.
    • A good place to start might be the “Hot Science” page from The Organic Center (a non-profit that summarizes research on the health and environmental impacts of organic).
  • Find two recent articles that address organic and its importance
  • Write your own simple yet comprehensive definition for certified organic that you could use to share with your sphere of influence.

 

Deliverables

Upload a PDF Document with your responses and links to your studies. Include your name (or team name), username, email address, and school.

Submission Guidelines

  • Please submit all entries as PDFs – no word or pages docs.
  • Do not include # signs or spaces in filenames
  • Please be sure to include all content for your submission in one doc
  • Do not upload a file bigger than 5 MB
  • Link images if possible
  • You will get a confirmation that your submission uploaded correctly. If you did not get a confirmation, please try again.
  • If your total points do not change, your submission did not load correctly and you will have to try again.
  • Send any questions you have to info@turninggreen.org
  • Don’t forget to post about the challenge and your learnings/doings on social media and tag us on Facebook @TurningGreen, on Twitter @TurningGreenOrg, and on Instagram @TurningGreenOrg and use #PGC2016.
The deadline for entering this challenge has past.

Greener

40 POINTS

Think

When people think of “organic” they usually connect it with food, but the label covers a wide variety of products used in our daily lives. But be aware of what is referred to as “greenwashing”. Companies often use misleading images like rolling green pastures, bright blue skies, vivid leaves, or even the words “natural” and “organic” to create the illusion that their products are eco-friendly, even when they’re not.

Challenge

  • Look through your bathroom, kitchen, or dorm room for products that you regularly use and select five staple items from different categories (i.e. body care, clean, clothing and food, etc).
  • Study the labels, materials, and ingredients of each product.
  • Are any of your selected products certified organic? If so, who is the certifier? Do they have any other third-party certifications?
  • If they’re not certified, search the web, visit a local store, or better yet, visit your local green grocer or co-op to find organic versions of each product.
  • Make a side-by-side graphic of the conventional versus organic alternative of one item.
  • Caption the side-by-side graphic with at least two facts that you learned, to suggest why you might choose the organic product over the conventional one. Let us know if you make the switch and why.
  • Post your side-by-side graphic on the social media platform of your choice. Caption the graphic with two facts — how the products differ and why you might choose the organic version instead. Tag @TurningGreen (on Facebook) or @TurningGreenOrg (on Instagram or Twitter) and use the hashtag #PGC2016.

 

Deliverables

Upload a PDF Document with your responses and a screenshot of your social media post. Include your name (or team name), username, email address, and school.

Submission Guidelines

  • Please submit all entries as PDFs – no word or pages docs.
  • Do not include # signs or spaces in filenames
  • Please be sure to include all content for your submission in one doc
  • Do not upload a file bigger than 5 MB
  • Link images if possible
  • You will get a confirmation that your submission uploaded correctly. If you did not get a confirmation, please try again.
  • If your total points do not change, your submission did not load correctly and you will have to try again.
  • Send any questions you have to info@turninggreen.org
  • Don’t forget to post about the challenge and your learnings/doings on social media and tag us on Facebook @TurningGreen, on Twitter @TurningGreenOrg, and on Instagram @TurningGreenOrg and use #PGC2016. 
The deadline for entering this challenge has past.

Greenest

60 POINTS

Think

According to the USDA (US Department of Agriculture) there are now more than 31,000 certified organic operations around the world. The numbers are increasing every year, as organic product sales in the United States have hit $43.3 billion and 75 billion globally. Clearly, more consumers are realizing the benefits of organics. But do they all know what “organic” really means?

Challenge

  • Teach 5 friends what you have learned during this challenge. Topics of discussion can include; standards, impacts on human and environmental health, etc.
  • Ask your friends what they think about organics.
  • Record on video at least one of your conversations (max. 2 minutes).
  • Reflect upon the responses.
    • Did your friends already know what “organic” means?
    • Were they interested in learning more?
    • Did you inspire them to be more conscious?
    • Summarize your conversations in a few sentences and tell us how you felt about what you were able to teach forward.

 

Deliverables

Upload a PDF Document with your responses, an outline of what you talked about, and a link to your video recording on YouTube. Include your name (or team name), username, email address, and school.

Submission Guidelines

  • Please submit all entries as PDFs – no word or pages docs.
  • Do not include # signs or spaces in filenames
  • Please be sure to include all content for your submission in one doc
  • Do not upload a file bigger than 5 MB
  • Link images if possible
  • You will get a confirmation that your submission uploaded correctly. If you did not get a confirmation, please try again.
  • If your total points do not change, your submission did not load correctly and you will have to try again.
  • Send any questions you have to info@turninggreen.org
  • Don’t forget to post about the challenge and your learnings/doings on social media and tag us on Facebook @TurningGreen, on Twitter @TurningGreenOrg, and on Instagram @TurningGreenOrg and use #PGC2016. 
The deadline for entering this challenge has past.

Extra Credit

75 POINTS

Due: October 9, 2016, at 6 am PT

Think

Now that you are starting to get a sense of what organic means and how it impacts your life and our planet, we want you to dive a little deeper. We often hear that access and cost are obstacles to organic. Yet, we believe it’s important to strike a balance, to buy thoughtfully but with intention. The more of us who support organic, the better prices will become.

Challenge

We want you to curate a day in your life – with an organic edge. While it might not be something you need to do overnight, this challenge will help you think about the options that are in front of you, and how you might incorporate new choices into your routine over time – something to aspire toward. There are many things to consider like budget and access. But for now, dream and create. See where it leads you.

Here’s the challenge. Picture a day in your life. Think about what you eat, touch, wear, live with, and even sleep on. What would the certified organic version of those products be and where would you find them?

  • Create a Pinterest board, a drawing, collage, or other visual medium of your choice to “organicize” your life.
    • Include items that would be part of your daily routine (think food, clothing, bedding, body care, etc.)
  • Caption each picture with the brand name, where you found it and how much it costs. Try to find the best pricing for each item.
  • Caption the creation of your “life in organic” with a thoughtful paragraph outlining what you chose and why. Feel free to comment on the observations you made or anything else that came to mind.

 

Deliverables

Upload a PDF Document with a link to your Pinterest board, and your response. Include your name (or team name), username, email address, and school.

Submission Guidelines

  • Please submit all entries as PDFs – no word or pages docs.
  • Do not include # signs or spaces in filenames
  • Please be sure to include all content for your submission in one doc
  • Do not upload a file bigger than 5 MB
  • Link images if possible
  • You will get a confirmation that your submission uploaded correctly. If you did not get a confirmation, please try again.
  • If your total points do not change, your submission did not load correctly and you will have to try again.
  • Send any questions you have to info@turninggreen.org
  • Don’t forget to post about the challenge and your learnings/doings on social media and tag us on Facebook @TurningGreen, on Twitter @TurningGreenOrg, and on Instagram @TurningGreenOrg and use #PGC2016. 
The deadline for entering this challenge has past.