Ever since I weaned, I try to buy Earth's Best organic formula for my son to make sure he's getting natural ingredients. But whatever brand I get, I always look for the label that says it's fortified with DHA/ARA because I know that these polyunsaturated fatty acids, naturally found in breastmilk, are good for brain development. Turns out, DHA/ARA (at least the non-boob kind) and organic may not go hand in hand.
The Obama administration announced last month that since DHA and ARA in formula are synthetic additives, they will no longer be permitted in products certified as organic. According to the Washington Post, the USDA had decided not to allow synthetic DHA/ARA in organic formula about three years ago, but were overruled by a program manager who was lobbied by formula makers. The USDA will not work on crafting new guidelines for organic formula, although this could take a year or longer. In the mean time, if you don't want your baby to have synthetic DHA but nursing is not an option, read labels closely and look for off-brands to find one of the few non-DHA options out there, like this one.