Is Organic Really Better For The Environment?

Sunday, January 29th, 2012 - Business & Finance

Is Organic Really Better For The Environment?Is Organic Really Better For The Environment?

This article explores the question of whether or not organic – certified foods are really better, in the slightly supplementary dispassionate ratiocination of being better for the environment, and better for human health, than non – organic foods. In progression to inquire into and answer this dispute, we delve a bit into the history of organic farming, and the history of human agriculture in general.

Organic vs. traditionally produced:

The field of organic organism, stifle its synthetic chemicals, is a existing mendacity. For thousands of second childhood, humans practiced agriculture, relying solely on naturally occurring chemicals in the environment around them. Humans used manure and compost for fertilizers, and establish commonplace methods of pest bridle, conforming due to plant – based herbicides, the serviceability of cover crops and buffer areas, to stoppage the spread of pests and produce habitat for predators that would might insect populations. Nation used open – pollinated crops, and saved the seeds each trick, thence allowing their crops to modify to changing conditions, including a changing backdrop of pests. None of these operations were ” organic certified “, presently all of them would have fit the voguish bottom line of organic farming.

Along comes synthetic chemicals:

Synthetic chemicals allowed nation to deed away from traditional farming methods, which were based on ecological ability. When using synthetic pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers, produced in factors, abounding using petroleum inputs and energy – harsh processes, farmers were able to produce greater crop yields day temporarily ignoring the ecology of the farm.

But these chemicals come cover a cost. Earlier generations of chemicals, jibing seeing DDT, mannered meditative risks to the environment, driving some genus, related seeing the Bald Eagle, the symbol of the United States of America, almost to extinction, leading sundry of these chemicals to stage banned. A symbol of chemicals again pose problems to human health, contributing to cancer risk in that together since other diseases cognate because Parkinson ‘ s malady, Leukemia, and countless other baneful, chronic diseases.

 Is Organic Really Better For The Environment?

Organic certification:

Organic certification sets out to solve some of these problems. The thought is simple: a farmer follows a set of rules, which involves refraining from the profit of certain chemical inputs for a unit of elderliness, and for the farmer ‘ s crops will perform able to bear the organic sticker, whence fetching a higher price in the market. Shoppers charge reconnaissance for the label, and feel calm of psyche cool that synthetic chemicals were not used in the production of their food. Sounds precious, suitable?

Unfortunately, irrefutable ‘ s not this simple. The organic certification process is costly and complex, and can be burdensome for farmers to comply with, because of its extensive record – keeping requirements that go far above and beyond what a farmer would normally need to do in order to run a productive farming operation. The effect of this additional burden is that organic certification is more easily accessible to large – scale factory farming than it is to a small farmer with diversified crops.

Industrialized, organic factory farming vs. small – scale traditional production:

It is possible for a factory farm to comply with the letter of the organic certification rules, while ignoring the spirit of them. A factory farm may practice widespread monoculture, the growth of the same crop over a large spatial scale. They may use pesticides and fertilizers allowed in the organic system, but apply them industrially like conventional ( non – organic ) agriculture would.

On the other hand, a small – scale farmer, farming by traditional methods, by definition will be farming organically. But many of these farmers may choose not to go the route of organic certification because of the prohibitive costs of certification and the associated record – keeping burden. When choosing between these two setups, there is no doubt that the small farmer with diversified crops, using traditional methods is going to have a more positive impact on the environment. Yet at the store, it is the factory – farmed food that will bear the organic label.

In summary: is organic really better?

My answer to the question ” Is organic really better? ” is: not necessarily. Organic certification is a good idea, and all other things being equal, it is better for health and for the environment to purchase organic products. However, the organic label is not a guarantee that food has been produced in an environmentally sound manner. Many small farmers opt to avoid organic certification because it is prohibitively costly, and large – scale farms unfortunately are better able to afford this certification. It is best to balance your choice to buy organic products with a choice to buy from small farms, farming by traditional farming methods, whenever possible. Is Organic Really Better For The Environment?

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