What is organic?
Organic refers to the way in which agricultural products are grown and processed. Organic food production focuses on maintaining and replenishing soil fertility without the use of toxic pesticides and fertilizers. Organic foods are minimally processed without artificial ingredients, preservatives, or irradiation in order to maintain the quality of the food (Organic Facts 1). At Native Sun, we view organic as an all-encompassing lifestyle.

What does “certified organic” mean?
“Certified Organic” means the item has been grown according to strict uniform standards that are verified by independent state or private organizations. Certification includes inspections of all aspects of a food production operation to ensure that the outlined standards are being met (Organic Facts 1).

Who regulates certified organic claims?
The Organic Food Production Act of 1990 (OFPA) set standards for the production, processing, and certification of organic food. In order to develop guidelines and regulate standards, the National Organic Standards Board was established, and in December of 2000, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) “unveiled detailed regulations to implement OFPA” nationwide (Organic Facts 1). Since 2002, any food labeled organic must meet the outlined standards. The USDA’s National Organic Program oversees the regulation and implementation of organic standards.

What does GMO stand for?
The term GMOs, or “genetically modified organisms” refers to plants or animals created through genetic engineering that fundamentally changes the organism in question.

How does Native Sun feel about GMOs?
We are advocates for non-GMO because of the lack of thorough GMO testing on humans, our belief in the right of the consumer to choose whether or not they wish to consume GMO foods, and our support of local and family farms that are often destroyed by the big business of GMO crops.

Does Native Sun support the Non-GMO Project?
Yes, we support the efforts of the Non-GMO Project in our stores.

What is Native Sun’s non-GMO policy?
We believe that we have the strictest non-GMO policy in the United States in spite of our dependence on the honesty of manufacturers, a flawed regulatory system, and a glaring lack of defined industry standards. In order to ensure that our personal standards are met, we contact each and every manufacturer and obtain confirmation that ingredients are not sourced from GMOs. We update several times a year to make sure nothing has changed in regards to raw materials used and the manufacturing process itself.

What do we do to ensure that every product in our store meets our standards?
As part of our ongoing food education and research program, we write every manufacturer to obtain written statements regarding the quality of the raw materials used in their products. If a manufacturer cannot verify the quality of the ingredients and production, we remove the product from our shelves. We know that the manufacturing process can change frequently, so we update our records several times a year.

What sets Native Sun apart from other natural foods stores?
First and foremost, we believe that our standards set us apart from other stores. At Native Sun, you can trust that:

  • All of our produce is 100% Organic.

  • Our meats come from grass-fed animals raised in open environments without hormones, antibiotics, nitrates/nitrites.

  • We support the CleanFish Alliance. We verify that our wild fin-fish are hook and line caught and our shellfish are harvested using sustainable methods.

  • Our poultry comes from animals raised in open-air environments on a diet of natural or organic feed without antibiotics.

  • We are proud to offer pasture eggs in addition to our organic and free-range offerings. All of our eggs are antibiotic and hormone free.

  • All of our dairy products are growth hormone free (rBGH/rBST) and antibiotic free and are sourced from animals fed natural or organic diets of grass and grains.

  • Grocery items are free of high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, artificial sweeteners, added sulfites, artificial colors, flavors and/or dyes.

  • We write every manufacturer to obtain written statements regarding the quality of the raw materials used in their products.

Does Native Sun take special orders?
In order to better meet your personal needs, we offer you the ability to special order any product available to us through our distributors. For items that we do not carry in our stores, we ask that you pre-pay when you place your order.

  • We extend a 10% case discount to you on many items that we carry and we provide wait-lists for out-of-stock items to ensure that you receive them as quickly as possible*.
  • Have a favorite product that you use every month? Have us place an ongoing special order to make sure that you’re never out of stock!
  • Place special orders for grocery items at the customer service desk at any of our store locations.
  • Place special orders for supplements and health and beauty products at the Nutrition desk at any store location.

*Make sure to confirm that your special order is eligible for a 10% case discount.

Does Native Sun Price Match?
At this time we do not price match.

What steps has Native Sun taken to become a more sustainable business?
We embrace opportunities to reduce waste and become more environmentally friendly. With the introduction of plant-sourced, biodegradable plastic bags, recycled Hot Bar and coffee containers, corn plastic Juice Bar cups, and numerous expansions and constructions according to stringent environmentalist guidelines, Native Sun as a whole has reduced its ecological footprint.