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100% organic soap?

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I've seen organic stuff on Columbus Foods and Bramble Berry. If it costs more, charge more, that's what I think. I am trying to move toward organic ingredients myself.
 
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I know, the mentality is that if people will pay more, then make it cost more. Its not fair...
 

Tabitha

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Yes, Organic costs more...Hmmm...They aren't using chemicals so it should cost less to grow...
You get smaller crops on organic farms. I don't know the exact stats, but you get many more bushels of products off 1 acre of conventional farmland than you do off 1 acre of organic farm land. Think *miracle grow*.
 
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I'll second that, but the quality of what little you actually get is far superrior.
 

happyday

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Yes, Organic costs more...Hmmm...They aren't using chemicals so it should cost less to grow... :roll:
I wish it worked that way. Unfortunately, chemical sprays and fertilizers were invented and became popular because they are cheaper, easier and more effective than the labor and integrated management practices required to grow the same crops organically. Organic doesn't mean that the farmer just lets nature take it's course! We had a very bad experience with organic growing on our farm several years ago. In fact, it's the primary reason that we now have grass-fed cattle and sheep instead of boysenberries with a Smuckers/R.W.Knudsen Organics contract.

Personally, I'm inclined to choose soap ingredients that have the lowest potential for chemical abuse during the growing and production process, and leave the "organic" label for somebody who wants the headaches.
 

happyday

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First sentance of post edited by mod team....

Pardon me while I belabor the point... 8) Minimum wage here is $7.50. To hoe a 20 acre berryfield would cost just about $750 in gross wages. Plus the 15.65% employer expense toward SSI and Medicare. Plus 2.7% unemployment insurance. Plus the umbrella premium as well as the hourly rate for workers compensation insurance. Plus I would have to provide an outhouse, washing facilities and cold drinking water no more than 3 minutes walk from wherever on that 20 acres the men are working (OSHA rules). Ugh. OTOH, I can put $40 worth of diesel in the tractor, mix $120 worth of Goal in the pull-tank, adjust the nozzles on my boom, turn up the iPod and be done by lunch. You have to admit that from a purely financial standpoint, it's a no-brainer.

But to be honest, these days with no crops and just pasture, I happily weed-whack the fencelines and my daughter scouts for thistles with a machete. In this situation, it takes the same amount of time and money to mow/whack as it would to spray an herbicide. We chose our cowherd carefully and haven't used a hormone or any antibiotics in over 10 years. We rotate pastures and compost and spread the winter bedding from the barn. The sheep are a little more prone to problems, but we spend more time and money on preventative measures than on meds. We're currently enjoying greens from the garden that are full of little bug-holes because the holes don't show when the greens are cooked, and I don't feel like having to wash even an organically-approved pesticide off my home-grown food. Believe me, I'm very much in favor of natural and sustainable methods, but I'm also a realist.

Hope it doesn't sound like I'm lecturing, I think it's more that I hoped to give some insight to others who haven't had any farming experience, just how many killer details there are in making ethics and economics work together. As far as organic soap ingredients go, I would also want to research v-e-e-e-ry carefully any claims of "certified organic" on products imported from other parts of the world because there is no universal standard. One might possibly look at potential rain forest or carbon footprint concerns too.

And... is there such a thing as organic lye? Should I start saving the ashes from the woodstove? Were they made from burning organic newspaper, junk mail and oak trees? :wink: :wink: :D
 

Tabitha

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Please remember our number one rule here at the SMF.

1 - The Soap Making Forum will not tolerate obscene, racist or sexually explicit language. Personal attacks are not permitted. We reserve the right to remove posts that are abusive, hateful, or defame or insult anyone. We also reserve the right to remove message board posts that are off-topic or not in English.

Just because it is not offensive to you, does not mean it isn't offensive to other members. We are the friendliest soap making forum on the net. Thank you for helping us keep it that way.
 
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Tabitha said:
Please remember our number one rule here at the SMF.

1 - The Soap Making Forum will not tolerate obscene, racist or sexually explicit language. Personal attacks are not permitted. We reserve the right to remove posts that are abusive, hateful, or defame or insult anyone. We also reserve the right to remove message board posts that are off-topic or not in English.

Just because it is not offensive to you, does not mean it isn't offensive to other members. We are the friendliest soap making forum on the net. Thank you for helping us keep it that way.
I'm just wondering, where is that coming from? I don't see any post that spurs that comment.
 

Tabitha

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Lovehound, that is because I have already deleted them :wink: . That is a mods job. To delete items that break the rules BEFORE the rest of the world gets to see them.
 
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As far as organic, pesticides make it easy and cheap to dose a crop with insecticides and produce plentiful crops with no insect damage, but with poison on it. Organic farming avoids the poison but other insect countermeasures are more costly than just spraying poison. That's why organic crops cost more. You can have either the cheaper produce that has some poison on it which may or may not hurt you, or you can pay more to have the bugs picked off by hand, no poison, your choice. It's obvious why organic costs more. It's more complex to decide if it's worth it.
 
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Tabitha said:
Lovehound, that is because I have already deleted them :wink: . That is a mods job. To delete items that break the rules BEFORE the rest of the world gets to see them.
So maybe you should have left sufficient context to understand the action. Otherwise your comment makes no sense. Or maybe you should have just deleted the post with no comment.
 

Soapmaker Man

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We will not tolerate any name calling or especially racially related attacks here. As Tab mentioned, that is what we do....

Paul :wink:
 
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Soapmaker Man said:
We will not tolerate any name calling or especially racially related attacks here. As Tab mentioned, that is what we do....

Paul :wink:
Aw you're just a soapmaker!!! There!!! :)

I just pointed out, that if what you do disappears, and then you later comment on what you do or did, nobody will understand the comment because the context is gone.

Aw... I was a moderator for a few years on a very active forum site with 25,000 members. I think I understand moderator issues fairly well...

We return you now to your regular program.
 

happyday

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:( Obviously, more got posted and then deleted during the time it took me to drive to the feed store and back. If I unwittingly said something that set things off, I'm sorry! Just guessing from what is left here, I fear that I may have been taken as having an attitude problem with Hispanic workers. Quite the contrary! I am the only white person where I work (also an agricultural business) and if I wasn't accepted and respected by the Hispanic workers, I wouldn't be able to do my job. My big "UGH" is because this an area and an industry where you can expect to run 100 social security numbers before you find 2 or 3 that are legally eligible to work. It's illegal to hire teenagers for crops that will be sold in interstate commerce, and it's been almost 25 years since we've seen housewives come out in the summer to help harvest any crops. I have had exactly ONE non-Hispanic man apply for field work ever. Sure, you can hire illegally and pay under the table, but we never have. My gripe has nothing to do with Hispanic people, it has to do with farming being a time-sensitive business that desperately needs a legal but affordable work force. I dread the hiring process. After all the hassle to grow certified organic berries? 75 cents a pound to the farmer. Figure an average of 3.5 tons per acre, and all production expenses come out before the farmer's family goes shopping. Our field workers had more cash at the end of the year than we did. So, in the end, I'm raising "natural grass-fed" beef on this acreage and doing the labor myself instead of "certified organic" berries with all the attending stresses. It really has nothing to do with the OP except we got down the road of "organic" economics being a simplistic notion that could be easily explained.

Again, I'm sorry that this thread has morphed from a simple question about ingredients to something convoluted and ugly. I've said my piece and if you want to pick me apart for it, so be it. But to reiterate the original message, please don't blindly assume that an "organic" stamp is any guarantee that a product is overall safer for the earth, that the product is somehow more honest or better. Do your research and then do it some more.
 

Tabitha

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Paul & I both did a little moderating on this thread. Some of the comments deleted/edited were racist, some where name calling in general. Some comments deleted/edited were innocent comments but no longer made sense w/ the other comments missing.

It would have been easier to deleted the whole thread but the organic conversation has value & we wanted to avoid throwing out the baby with the bath water.

I personally find it easier to delete comments & send messages to specific members rather than explain on the thread why & what was done. When you begin explaining it looks like you are defending your decision like I am doing now :?.
 

Tabitha

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Not to worry. I personally did not think you had a gripe with hispanics or other migrant workers.

Threads morph, that is what they do.
 

digit

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gratia said:
Back to the matter at hand, if you have to use lye in the product, does that mean that the final product is not organic, or cause the final product contains no actual lye, that is considered organic if all other product are organic?
Thanks
I do not know the exact answer about the lye, but most label the product as "saponified (insert oil names)" and add "organic".

I could buy any product, repackage it and claim it is organic. To be certain that the raw products are indeed organic, you can request the certification from the seller. I think any reputable seller would be more than happy to provide it. Then you have the documentation on hand should your finished product be questioned. :D

Digit
 
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gratia said:
Back to the matter at hand, if you have to use lye in the product, does that mean that the final product is not organic, or cause the final product contains no actual lye, that is considered organic if all other product are organic?
The problem that you face is that there is no legal definition of 'organic' as applied to soap (AFAIK). You are probably aware that soap is not an edible product. Ask me how I know. ;)

Seriously, you can use organic grade oils and fats if you want to make your "all organic" claim defensible. Sodium hydroxide is not an organic product because it is not grown. You can get food grade sodium hydroxide intended for human consumption if you like. It is about 20% more expensive than drain cleaner grade, and is used in some foods such as putting a glaze on pretzels.

So what I'm saying is that there's no real regulatory basis to say whether soap is organic or not, but there's no reason why you can't say "all organic ingredients" with the explanation that the lye is food grade. If somebody is still bothered by that then tell them to stick to detergents because all soap is made with lye of one sort or another.

Now where can I buy organic water..... ;)
 

Martin

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Do you know what fish do in organic water :shock: :lol:

Sorry could not help myself :D

Sonja
 

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