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Organic vs. Local? Transparent, Says Alberto Gonzalez of GustOrganics

One topic that frequently gets discussed is whether it is preferable to buy organic or to buy local.

To many people, especially those in Brooklyn, there can be nothing better than local. In a recent blog post, I address this very issue in detail and discuss why I choose organic.

My friend Alberto Gonzalez, owner of NYC’s only certified organic restaurant GustOrganics, wrote an excellent piece in The Huffington Post yesterday about this subject but distilled it down even further.

What he wants is transparency.

Unfortunately, the word “natural” has become a completely abused marketing term, stands for almost nothing, and is the reason why Naked Juice, Wesson Oil and Frito-Lay are facing class action lawsuits.

Therefore, “organic” has become the term which identifies the “cleanest” foods that we can eat.

Organic has strict standards, rules and regulations. Organic actually means something.

Yet in this debate over “organic”, “natural” and “local”, the only thing that organic consumers really want to know is whether our food has been prepared or grown in a healthy and environmentally responsible way.

– Were pesticides used?

– Does it contain GMOs?

– Are there artificial colors or preservatives?

As Alberto Gonzalez says, we just want transparency when it comes to deciding which foods to put into our bodies. Is that too much to ask?


I meet A LOT of people in the organic industry, and Alberto Gonzalez is one of the most conscientious and dedicated organic advocates that I know.

If you’re ever in New York City, definitely go check out GustOrganics.

Here are videos (one in English and one in Spanish) with Alberto Gonzalez talking about the process of becoming a certified organic restaurant.

A message from Tradin Organic

Why Tradin Organic is Prioritizing Regenerative Organic Farming

At Tradin Organic, we believe that regenerative organic farming is key to growing healthy and nutritious food ingredients — for now and for future generations.

And in Sierra Leone, we have grown the world’s first Regenerative Organic Certified cacao.

Learn more.

livingmaxwell: a guide to organic food & drink