Organic Foods Badge

(Discover Agriculture)

by Kerry Cordy

You may use any higher level requirement as an optional requirement as well as those listed at the end of the badge.) 


Penguins: Do three requirements including the 2 starred.


_____ 1.* Learn what the term “organic” means.


_____ 2.* Have a taste test with at least 3 different items.  Compare both the organic and non-organic version of the same food.  Which tastes better?  Is there a difference? Why?



Otters: Do four requirements including the 2 starred.


_____ 1.* Complete Penguin requirements #1 and 2.


_____ 2.* Why are organic foods and products considered healthier than non-organic foods and products?



Dolphin:  Do five requirements including the 2 starred.


_____ 1*  Do Otter requirements # 1 and 2.


_____ 2.*  What is sustainable agriculture and how does it relate to organic foods?



Butterfly:  Do six requirements including the 2 starred


_____ 1.*  Do Dolphin requirements #1 & 2.


_____ 2.*  What are genetically modified foods (GMO = genetically modified organism)?  What are the benefits and potential risks of GMO foods to farmers, consumers and the environment?



Eagle: Do seven requirements including the 2 starred


_____ 1.*  Do Butterfly requirements #1 & 2.


_____ 2.*  Learn about the environmental impact of choosing organic products over those conventionally grown.



Owl:  Do nine requirements including the 2 starred

_____ 1. *  Do Eagle requirements 1 & 2

_____ 2. *  Teach someone how to do a skill from this badge or teach some knowledge about this badge to someone.   You can teach kids, your spouse, seniors, anyone, just as long as you are sharing your new found knowledge.   If for some reason you cannot teach what you have learned to someone else, you may choose an additional 2 optional requirements instead.


Optional requirements:


_____ 3.  On the same day, purchase a fruit or vegetable in both organic and non-organic. Place both on your counter.  Which rots first?  Why?


_____ 4. Make some organic vanilla ice cream. Compare the taste and texture to store bought vanilla ice cream.  Look at the label of the store bought ice cream and compare it to what you put into your own ice cream.  Which do you think is better for you? Why?

Vanilla Ice Cream in a Bag

•        2 tablespoons organic sugar

•        ¼  cup organic cream

•        ¾  cup organic half&half

•        ½  teaspoon organic vanilla extract

•        ½  cup salt (The bigger the granules, the better. Kosher or rock salt works best, but table salt is fine.)

•        Ice cubes (enough to fill each gallon-size bag about half full)

•        1 pint-size Ziploc bag •        1 gallon-size Ziploc bag

Instructions     Combine the sugar, cream, half and half, and vanilla extract in the pint-size bag and seal it tightly. Place the salt and ice in the gallon-size bag, then place the sealed smaller bag inside as well. Seal the larger bag. Now shake the bags until the mixture hardens (about 5 minutes). Feel the small bag to determine when it's done.  (This     Take the smaller bag out of the larger one, and eat the ice cream right out of the bag. Easy cleanup too! Serves 1.


_____ 5.  Take a field trip to an organic farm.   If you cannot do this in person visit one online with the permission of a parent.


_____ 6.  Plant a plant and care for it using organic methods.


_____ 7.  Learn 3 organic methods of pest control.


_____ 8.  Find a recipe for something organic that is non-edible, such as shampoo, hair dye, or window cleaner.  Make some and try it out.  Does it work better than the conventional store bought variety?


_____ 9.  Make a compost heap.  How does compost help to grow things in an organic way?


_____ 10.  What is the history of organic foods?


_____ 11.  Find out how something is certified organic?  What requirements are there?  Who certifies the product?


_____ 12. Choose 3 items and compare the labels of both the organic version and the non-organic version of the product.  For example, you may choose to compare the label of an organic ice cream with a non-organic ice-cream, or an organic shampoo with a non-organic shampoo.  After reading the ingredients for each, which do you think you would rather use?  Why?  Test out each product and discuss which you like better and why.


_____ 13. Visit a local farmer's market.  If you have a garden of your own, try selling some of your extras at the market.


_____ 14.  Visit an organic food store.   Price compare at least 10 items with similar items found at a regular grocery store.  Organic foods generally cost more.  Growing organic foods is more time and labor intensive and farmers do not receive the same subsidies that non-organic farmers receive.  What other reasons might there be for organic foods to be more expensive than non-organic?


_____ 15.  Conduct a poll of family and friends.  Ask them the following questions: Do you know what a GMO (genetically modified organism) is? Have you consumed any GMO foods in the past week? If so, how many (times) and how do you identify them?    Do you think the government should require genetically modified foods to be labeled as such? Discuss your findings.


_____ 16.  Read an article that addresses the ethical issues behind GMO foods.  Write a short essay in response.


_____ 17.  With a parent's permission, visit the websites of both Whole Foods and Monsanto.  How do their attitudes differ toward GMO foods?  What type of social and economic impact could GMO foods have on each company?Whole Foods Monsanto


_____ 18.  Investigate proposed legislation about organic farming. You may also investigate legislation in other countries.


_____ 19.  Create a menu using only fresh organic products.  Shop for your ingredients, and cook the menu you planned.


_____ 20.  Participate in a community service project that involves organic foods, products, or information.  You might volunteer in a community garden, donate organic foods to the local food bank, or create posters to educate others about the benefits of organics.


_____ 21.  What is the environmental impact of choosing organic products over those conventionally grown?



Organic games and recipes for kids

Organic coloring and activity booklet