Organic farming is not the same everywhere you look. When you are looking at organic products, are you looking for products that are free of chemicals and GMOs or are you wanting something that is created with the ethical treatment of land and animals in mind?
Biodynamic agriculture or biodynamic farming is the holistic approach to organic farming developed by Dr. Rudolf Steiner in 1924. It was an amazing concept at that time and something that companies such as Hipp and Holle baby formula and foods followed. The difference between conventional organic farming and biodynamic farming is that organic farming may still follow conventional farming practices. While they may not spray plants with herbicides and pesticides, there is still a question of the ethical treatment of the livestock or the respect to the land and the community.
Biodynamics is defined by the Biodynamic Association as a holistic, ecological, and ethical approach to farming, gardening, food, and nutrition. It is more than the crops that are harvested or the animals that are raised. Dr. Steiner wanted farmers to integrate scientific understanding and the spirit of nature. The practices of a biodynamic farm promote health and fertility and sustain every aspect of the farm community.
Animals are treated with respect. Dairy animals are not dehorned and they live off the grass in the fields. Overcrowding is prohibited. There is no chemical run-off that can affect the quality of the final product, and animals are not treated with antibiotics or chemicals to stimulate growth or unnatural health.
Fertilizer is a natural combination of herbs, minerals, and manure with a focus on the good bacteria that contribute to the growth of grass and crops as nature intended. Not only is it better for the environment and the ecology, but it also makes the food taste better with the balance of nutrients that should come from every type of food.
Hipp, Holle, and Lebenswert all practice biodynamic farming, but each of them have their own variation under the term.
Hipp Organic has been certified as a Biodynamic company. It only uses biodynamic milk along with its organically grown food. The company has been organic since 1932 and is one of the pioneers in biodynamic farming and sustainability. Because of their high standards in organic baby formula, it meets or exceeds the organic standards established by the European Union.
Holle creates baby formula that meets biodynamic qualifications according to Demeter certification. Demeter Biodynamic Farming methods is more of a closed system that depends more on the dynamics of the farm rather than outside sources. Demeter certification was the first ecological label for organically produced foods after its establishment in 1928. With these strict requirements while focusing on the quality of organic foods, Holle and its Demeter-quality goods easily exceed European Union organic standards.
Lebenswert has earned its biodynamic organic certification through The Bioland Association. Bioland is the leading certification organization for biodynamic farms in Germany. The purpose of the organization is to develop a farming system that is ecologically, economically, and socially better than conventional means. Their goal of high quality and healthy foods is reflected in their seven principles for agriculture. Since 1971, Bioland has been working on the challenges both today and in the future of farming and the environment. Their guidelines also surpass the standards of the European Union.