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thanatassa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Two federal agencies are involved with food labeling standards in the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The former regulates health and nutritional claims and the latter such things as state or country of origin. The USDA also regulates herbicide and pesticide use, banning chemicals that have been proven harmful to human health. The USDA also certifies organic produce with the USDA Organic seal, a certification that specifies a product free of genetically  modified organisms and most artificial fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides. There are also non-profit (or NGO) and state based forms of organic and fair trade certification. Country of origin labels are also important as different countries have different regulations on food safety.

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