What Is Organic
We often see the word organic on many product labels, but it's a term that is often misapplied or misused.
The USDA's National Organic Program (NOP) provides the highest standard for organic products. Many products claim to be organic, but without USDA certification, it's impossible to verify those claims.
Within the NOP there are three certification levels, which classify a product based on its total percentage of organic ingredients, (excluding water or salt). The three classifications are:
Organic - This means a product contains at least 95% organic contents by weight. These products are usually prevented from reaching 100% because they contain a trace amount of some natural preservative or an agent used in processing (for example, citric acid to preserve shelf life). Moreover, these trace ingredients must be found on the USDA's approved list of ingredients which can be used in organic products.
Made with organic - This terminology is used for products which contain at least 70% organic ingredients, but do not reach 95%. The USDA does not allow any product which has less than 70% organic ingredients to market or label itself organic. Again, this category requires all other ingredients to be found on the USDA's list of approved ingredients for organic products.
How organic is Nonnavita Soap?
Because of soap's chemistry, no bar soap (and most skin care products) can ever reach the 95% mark. This is because the production of bar soap requires lye (sodium hydroxide, or NaOH). Lye is on the USDA's list of allowable non-organic ingredients. Because sodium hydroxide accounts for 10-15% of ingredients, no bar soap, even if every ingredient is organic, can ever achieve 90%.
All Nonnavita Soap is at least 85% organic, as certified by the USDA under their National Organic Program. All organic ingredients are denoted on our ingredient labels by an asterisk (*).