After a drawn-out debate, the U.S. Agriculture Department has significantly narrowed the definition of organic livestock to animals that spend a third of the year grazing on pasture.
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The new rules also say that “organic” milk and meat must come from livestock grazing on pasture for at least four months of the year, and that 30 percent of their feed must come from grazing.
The old rules said only that animals must have access to pasture.
Once a niche market, the organic industry has grown exponentially in the last 20 years. Organic products are grown without pesticides, hormones, antibiotics or biotechnology.
Source: SF Gate February 13, 2010