Organic Week Media Kit for Bloggers

What is Organic Week?

Organic Week is Canada’s largest annual celebration of organic food, farming and products. Hundreds of retail locations participate in organic promotions, while over 200 community-level events are held across the country. Events include everything from pickling workshops to recipe contests, farm tours, or organic food and drink tastings. Every school, retailer, chef, manufacturer, organic grower or advocate is encouraged to get involved — help us showcase the benefits of organic and its positive impact on the environment and human health!

Save The Date: September 17-25, 2016

This year, events are rolling in fast. In Ontario, Organic Garage will be hosting their annual Organic Week Roadshow in support of Organic Week! Here you can sample a wide variety of organic products, enjoy specials on organic, local, and all natural goods. In B.C., the Okanagan Greens Society will celebrate the 10th Anniversary Organic Okanagan Festival at Summerhill Pyramid Winery. Once again the OOF will highlight National Organic Week in Canada; showcasing  local organic farmers and organic food production. And that’s just a taste of Organic Week 2015’s events lineup

Thanks to the ongoing support of our sponsors and participating communities across Canada, Organic Week is prepared for its 7th year anniversary. With your help and creative outreach, we can work together to make Organic Week 2016 the biggest and best yet!

What you can do:

  • Guest author a post about organics on our blog
  • Review organic-related events in your community. Click here to see a list of events happening in your area.
  • Feature organic farmers or retailers. Click here for a list of retailers.
  • Join and spread the word about our social media campaign #SpotCanadaOrganic
  • Create your own posts using our digital assets. Click here to download them.

Key Messages:

Key Message One

Organic certification is government regulated, so product can be traced from farm-to-fork to ensure integrity.

Supporting Messages

  • Organic farmers are rigorously inspected by a third party each year to ensure they are meeting the Canada Organic Standards. To pass inspection, all elements of how a product was grown and made must be documented.
  • Organic refers to products that follow strict standards and inspection from ‘farm-to-fork’. Organic certification lets consumers know that the integrity of their food, which begins on the farm, has been protected and maintained through each step of the supply chain.

Key Message Two

Organic production is friendly to the environment and promotes animal welfare.

Supporting Messages

  • Organic farming methods o er the best current model for promoting climate friendly food production. This is because these methods are less dependent on fossil-fuel- based fertilizers and persistent pesticides.
  • Organic farming also helps store high levels of carbon in the soil, promotes wildlife diversity, protects soil from erosion, helps prevent water contamination, and uses less energy than conventional farming methods.
  • Organic standards have detailed animal welfare requirements that ensure animals have access to pasture and plenty of space.
  • Animals must be raised without synthetic hormones or the routine use of antibiotics, and cannot be fed any genetically engineered (GMO) feed.

Key Message Three

Eating organic food reduces our exposure to pesticides and GMOs.

Supporting Messages

• Organic standards prohibit the use of genetic engineering (GMO) in seed, animal feed, and the ingredients of processed organic food and products. If you’re concerned about GMOs, choose organic.

• Canada’s Organic Standards place strict limits and prohibitions on:

• The use of persistent pesticides & synthetic fertilizers • The routine use of drugs, antibiotics or synthetic hormones
• Animal cloning
• Genetic engineering (GMOs)
• Sewage sludge (biosolids)
• Irradiation
• Artificial food colours, flavours, sweeteners, preservatives and many other processing aids

Guest Author

Our Organic Week blog features posts on the current hot-topics in the organic community, and with so many organic-related topics to choose from we would love to hear what you have to say!

Our website receives a lot of traffic, and posts can be shared across our various social media platforms for readers across Canada to see. We are happy to give you full credit and link back to your webpage.

If you are interested in writing an Organic Week guest blog, please contact us at info@organicweek.ca

Feature and Review Events

As Organic Week events are submitted, there are plenty of opportunities to review events happening in your area leading up to Organic Week. You can check out our events map to see what’s being planned.

By featuring and reviewing events, farmers, brands, and retailers who support organics, it helps answer any questions your community may have about organics and work towards the best Organic Week yet!

Print Media

Organic Week once again partnering with The Globe and Mail to produce a Special Report on Organic in Canada’s national newspaper, timed to coincide with Organic Week September 17-25.

In addition to our signature insert, we are featured in magazines and newspapers across Canada with a variety of different audiences. We are proudly featured in prints such as:

  • Alive Magazine
  • Sage Magazine
  • Vitalité Quebec
  • NOW Toronto
  • Georgia Straight
  • Globe and Mail

Our print media aims to allow Canadian consumers to explore Canadian organics and become better acquainted with organics from the farm all the way to the table.

Social Media

Organic Week boasts two websites, one in English and one in French. Each site is regularly updated with information regarding eventswhere to find organic productsgeneral knowledge about organics, and much more!

Our Facebook and Twitter accounts are updated daily with information on organic as well as engaging our followers in discussions about Canadian organics and organic culture.

You can join the conversation at facebook.com/organicweek or Tweet us @organicweek. Our global campaign hashtag #organicweek is used across various platforms, and is a great way to stay part of the conversation!

FacebookTwitterInstagram

Social Media Contest: #SpotCanadaOrganic

The next time you spot the logo on your product purchase, we want to see it! Share your photo on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook or Twitter with the hashtag #SpotCanadaOrganic 

Photos will automatically be entered into a draw for awesome organic prize baskets! Your pics will also be featured on our social media pages and in our live photo below! We will draw an entry everyday during Organic Week September 19-27th –so save the date and check back for winners!

See more details here

Stumped for Facebook and Twitter content? Try some of our samples!

Twitter

Please note: all tweets have been created to allow for images. We highly recommend images to be used whenever possible. All images should be original or the owner of the photo should be cited.

  1. ICYMI: Sept 17–25 is #OrganicWeek. Help us spread the word!
  2. Happy #OrganicWeek! Celebrate with us, check out these amazing events and contests: www.organicweek.ca
  3. In the [area name] area? Make sure you check out [event name] on [date]! #OrganicWeek
  4. What to learn more about #[topic]? Don’t miss [event] on [date]! #OrganicWeek
  5. Why are #organic products important to you? Tell us as you celebrate #OrganicWeek, Sept 17–25!
  6. #DYK #organic is the most regulated food system in Canada? #OrganicWeek1
  7. Regional: each member can use the region-specific tweet that applies to them.#DYK BC has the strongest organic market in Canada? Way to go BC! #OrganicWeek#DYK Sask has the most organic operations, 97% of them in field crops? #OrganicWeek#DYK Ontario has the largest consumer market for organics? We love that #organic pride! #OrganicWeek#DYK Que invests over $13 million for #organic innovation? Merci, Quebec! #OrganicWeek2

8. Ontario #organic farmers have saved 106 acres from chemical use.3 Watch this to learn more: https://youtu.be/L_FI8AZIcwA

Clean water + clean soil + clean air = clean #organic food. Watch more here: https://youtu.be/L_FI8AZIcwA #OrganicWeek

9. Love salads? You’re probably buying #organic. 40% of salad mixes bought by Canadians are organic. #OrganicWeek

10. Love a good deal? Visit our store Sept 17–25 for some #OrganicWeek deals!

11. Only [#] more days to take advantage of our #OrganicWeek deals! Come visit us today!

12. Last day to take advantage of our #OrganicWeek deals! Come visit us today!

13. Do you have questions about #organic products? Visit our store and speak to our knowledgeable sta during #OrganicWeek Sept 17–25

14. Not sure what #organic farming is? Watch an organic farmer explain it here: https://youtu.be/911gXcR-Ixs

15. Next week is #OrganicWeek! Let’s celebrate the growing future of organics! Learn more here: www.organicweek.ca

16. #OrganicWeekisthecelebrationoforganicfood,farming and products. Join our celebration: [link to store event]

17. We love #organic because [reason]. Why do you? #OrganicWeek

18. Findouteverythingyouneedtoknowabout #OrganicWeek here: www.organicweek.ca

Facebook

  1. September is here! That means only 16 more days until Organic Week (September 17–25)! Learn about the week’s events and contests happening in your community here: www.organicweek.ca.
  2. Mark your calendars! September 17–25 is Organic Week! It’s a week to celebrate organic food, farming and products – and all of the benefits they bring to us! Learn more at www.organicweek.ca
  3. We can’t wait to celebrate Organic Week with you! It’s only a week away. Visit us in-store or check out one of the many local events at www.organicweek.ca
  4. Organic Week is here! Visit our store to learn more about our organic products, plus you don’t want to miss out on our Organic Week deals! Only 7 days to take advantage of them! To learn more about the other Organic Week events and contests, please visit www.organicweek.ca.
  5. It’s the last day of Organic week! Don’t miss out on our special deals – today is the last day! Looking forward to seeing you in-store!
  6. We’re proud to o er organically farmed products. Not sure what organic farming is? Watch an organic farmer explain it here: https://youtu.be/911gXcR-Ixs
  7. Organic week is your opportunity to learn more about organic foods, products and farming. Check out all of the week’s events and contests here: www.organicweek.ca
  8. Clean water + clean soil + clean air = clean organic food. Share this video and help spread the love of all things good for you: https://youtu.be/L_FI8AZIcwA
  9. Ever wonder what organic products are available and right for you? Our knowledgeable sta have all the answers to your questions! Visit us during Organic Week (September 17–25) to rediscover an organically healthier you.
  10. Visitourworkshopduring[eventname]on[date]tolearnmoreaboutorganicfoods,productsandfarming.Pluscheckoutall of the week’s events here: www.organicweek.ca
  11. Didyouknowthateatingorganiccanreduceyourpesticideintakeby80%?Findoutmoreatwww.organicweek.ca1
  12. Whatfoodsaresafetoeatwhenyoucan’tbuyorganic?Checkoutthe‘dirtydozen’atwww.organicweek.ca2
  13. Learnmoreaboutthebenefitsofeatingorganicat[eventname]this[dayoftheweek].Formoreinfoandalistofalltheeventstaking place this Organic Week, visit www.organicweek.ca

Organic Week Photos and Infographics

Organic FAQ

WHAT DOES ORGANIC MEAN?

It seems that organic is on everyone’s lips these days, but what does “organic” really mean?

Organic refers to the way agricultural products are grown and processed; organic food is produced using environmentally and animal friendly farming methods. Organic certification lets consumers know that every step along the supply chain has protected and maintained the organic integrity that begins on the farm.

In Canada, this system is governed by government organic standards and regulations, and applies to both domestic and imported products. Canada’s organic standards are among the most recognized in the world, and place strict limits and prohibitions on the use of toxic and persistent pesticides; synthetic fertilizers; the routine use of drugs, antibiotics or synthetic hormones; animal cloning; genetic engineering (“GMOs”); sewage sludge (“biosolids”); and irradiation. Organic standards also forbid the use of artificial food colours, flavours, sweeteners, preservatives and many other processing aids and ingredients in processed foods.

Guided by these and other standards, organic is now the most heavily regulated and scrutinized food system in Canada, letting you help our environment while also choosing great-tasting, healthy food for you and your family.

IS ORGANIC FOOD PESTICIDE-FREE?

Most organic products test free of chemical pesticide residues, but this is not always the case. Sadly, chemical residues already contaminate much of our water, air and soil, and residues can sometimes show up in our food—even organic food. Organic agriculture is a response to this pollution but it doesn’t mean organic products will always be 100% residue “free”, since no one can make that guarantee 100% of the time (at least not until more farmers go organic!). However, many studies and experts have verified that if you want to reduce your exposure to chemical residues, the best way to do this is to choose organic products.

It’s important to remember that organic is about more than simply not using chemicals: it’s about rotating crops and building healthy soil for the future, it’s about treating animals well, and many other things you can’t “test” for (which is why we have organic inspectors out in the fields!).

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ‘ORGANIC’ AND ‘NATURAL’?

A lot! In Canada, organic is regulated by the government and must follow national standards, while “natural” is a marketing term used by companies based on their own definition of what “natural” is. That means anyone can use the word “natural” on their products, and consumers have to trust them. “Organic” on the other hand, is the gold standard for “eco-labels”—inspected and overseen by the government. Make sure you Think Before You Eat and look for the “Canada Organic” logo!

WHY CHOOSE ORGANIC PRODUCTS?

  •  Organic products meet strict national standards — The “Canada Organic” logo is the public’s assurance that products have been grown and handled according to strict procedures and rules. Organic is the most heavily regulated and scrutinized food system in Canada.
  • Cut back on chemicals! — Many herbicides and insecticides commonly used in agriculture have been found to be carcinogenic, hormone replicators, or negative for children’s development. Choosing organic has been shown to significantly reduce your exposure to chemical residues.
  • Organic farms take water seriously — Organic farmers are required to manage the land and life around water systems very carefully, and are inspected annually. By not using synthetic fertilizers and persistent toxic chemicals, organic farming is also easy on our precious water reserves, while building good soils that fight erosion.
  • Organic farmers work in harmony with nature — Organic agriculture builds healthy ecosystems, and organic farms have higher biodiversity on them and around them too: promoting sustainability and ecological balance.
  • Organic methods reduce pollution and wasted energy— More energy is used to produce synthetic fossil-fuel-based fertilizers than to cultivate and harvest crops or to transport food. Canadian studies have shown that organic farming practices can use as little as half the energy of other farming methods, and help to sequester carbon back into the soil.
  • Protect the health of farmers and children — Farmers exposed to pesticides can have a significantly higher risk of contracting cancer compared to non-farmers. And children are exposed to relatively more than an adult is when they eat residues on their food. Choosing organic reduces the exposure for children, and the farmers who grew their food.
  • Organic farmers build healthy soil — Soil is the foundation of the food chain. Organic farming is focused on using sustainable practices that build healthy soil microbiology and prevent erosion, leaving fertile land that will provide for future generations.
  • Organic farming is good for rural Canada — The Census of Agriculture has shown that, on average, organic farming families earn more from their farms than the typical Canadian farm does, and employ more people per farm too!
  • Organic producers strive to preserve genetic diversity — The loss of a large variety of species (biodiversity) is one of the most pressing environmental concerns. The good news is that many organic farmers and gardeners have been collecting and preserving seeds, and growing heirloom varieties and rare breeds of livestock for decades.
  • Organic food tastes great! — It’s common sense: healthy soils produce strong, healthy plants that become nourishing food for people and animals.
  • Organic is the only non-GMO standard overseen by the Canadian government — organic standards forbid the use of GMOs in seeds, in animal feed, and in the ingredients of processed organic food and products. If you’re concerned about GMOs, think before you eat: think Canada Organic!

HOW CAN I GO ORGANIC?

It’s as easy as choosing only organic foods! Here are a few extra tips:

  • Read your labels! Always look for the “Canada Organic” logo – Organic products are always certified, so look for the certifier name and seal.
  • Start small, and have fun! It’s never too late to “go organic” – Explore the diversity of Canadian organic farmers and processors have to offer: from breakfast to dessert!
  • Share the love – prepare a special meal for your loved ones or host a dinner party showcasing some interesting organic ingredients. (And then share the recipe with us!) Here are a few great organic recipes.
  • Think before you purchase. Remember to support your local organic farmer, and ask them about their organic claim: they’ll be happy to show you their organic certificate.

WHERE CAN I FIND ORGANIC FOOD?

Did you know that Canada has a wide variety of organic products, all to be found at a store near you?

Organic products are getting easier and easier to find. Check out your local:

  • Cafés and restaurants
  • grocery stores,
  • natural and health food stores,
  • farmers’ markets
  • food-box delivery programs or community supported agriculture

If you can’t find great Canadian organic products at your favourite spot, it doesn’t hurt to ask the manager to bring some in… we’re still growing organic in Canada so we appreciate the help!

And remember: always look for the “Canada Organic” logo—Organic products are always certified, so look for the certifier name.

For more information, visit our partner website: Think Canada Organic.

We provided a media training seminar for those interested in participating in Organic Week. 

Click here to access the information. 

For more information please e-mail info@organicweek.ca or contact:

Canada Organic Trade Association
www.ota-canada.ca
613-482-1717

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