Organic farming system restores and preserves soil fertility by avoiding hazardous fertilizers and pesticides. It promotes actions that improve biodiversity, lessen negative effects on the environment, and enhance the health and welfare of animals.
How Do You Define "Organic"?
As per the definition of organic by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), "organic food is produced using sustainable agricultural production practices. Not permitted are most conventional pesticides; fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients, sewage sludge; bioengineering; or ionizing radiation. Organic meat, poultry eggs, and dairy products come from animals that are given no antibiotics or growth hormone." Organic production takes into account the following factors:
- The quality of the soil.
- The welfare of farming livestock.
- Pesticide control.
- Use organic farming practices such as no tilling, crop rotation, etc.
- Use of natural fertilizers.
- No animal growth hormones and antibiotics.
- No GMOs (genetically modified organisms).
The Importance of Organic
When it comes to the importance of organic, science is undoubtedly on our side. A clean way of producing and procuring things has significant advantages for human, animal, and environmental health. Strengthening the organic sector reduces the usage of synthetic chemicals, which limits the chemicals from conventional food production that pollutes the environment.
Meanwhile, organic farming also protects wildlife, encourages biodiversity, and aids in preserving and enhancing local ecosystems. It employs more natural methods such as compost, manure, and cover crops to promote soil fertility which leads to higher extraction of carbon from the air. To put it simply, the organic method respects the environment, which benefits us all.
Below are ten benefits (health, environmental, animal and social) and reasons to switch to organic:
- Organic food is linked to a smaller carbon footprint along with a lesser risk for chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes.
- Generous intake of organic food is linked to a lower risk of childhood allergies.
- Organic produce has higher quantities of certain nutrients, minerals, and antioxidants.
- Switching to an organic diet has been shown to reduce cancer-causing herbicide glyphosate in blood levels.
- Organic farms adhere to guidelines about the protection of the farm's biodiversity and steering clear of harmful, synthetic chemicals.
- Organic farming practices improve soil health and increase carbon sequestration. The top 30 centimeters of well-managed farmland alone can store an additional 0.9 to 1.85 gigatons of carbon annually.
- Organic fields that do not use toxic chemicals facilitate safe habitats for wildlife, hosting 30% more species than non-organic farming systems.
- Organic farming focuses on animal disease prevention. The livestock is allowed to behave naturally and is provided with organic pasture for healthy and strong rearing.
- Organic farms can operate on a small scale, facilitating the engagement of marginal farmers. It offers a source of income opportunities at the local level.
- Organic farming brings back old indigenous knowledge, customs, and traditions in a technology-jammed world.
Suggested read: 5 Reasons Why You Should be Wearing Organic Cotton