How your food is grown or raised can have a major impact on your mental and emotional health as well as the environment. Organic foods often have more beneficial nutrients, such as antioxidants, than their conventionally-grown counterparts and people with allergies to foods, chemicals, or preservatives may find their symptoms lessen or go away when they eat only organic foods.
Here are some benefits of organic food:
- Organic food is fresher
Organic food is also often fresher because it does not contain preservatives that prolongs its shelf life.
- Organic farming is better for environmental health
Organic farming is better for the environment because its practices involve less pollution soil erosion, and energy. Eliminating the use of pesticides in farming also benefits nearby birds and animals and people who live close to farms.
- Organic food is GMO-free
Genetically modified organisms (GMO) or genetically engineered (GE) foods are plants who’s DNA were altered in ways that do not occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding.
- Organics don’t inhibit the growth of super strains
Nature always adapts. Spraying chemicals to kill bugs only makes them grow, adapt to overcome the horrible toxins we use to kill them. There will always be something that eats the plant, and it will continue to grow and adapt until we no longer have control over it. The chemicals we use will eventually become ineffective and plants and pests will become much more harmful.
- Organic farming supports pollinators
Herbicides and Pesticides do not differentiate between good and bad bugs, it simply kills them all. In order for there to be life on earth we need to maintain a certain level of biodiversity; this includes everything from the biggest mammals to the tiniest of insects. Organic farming practices healthy growing techniques that aim to maintain that necessary level of biodiversity.
- Organics support a healthier farm lifestyle and a healthier community
Growing food organically does not harm the surrounding community in which its grown. Unlike non-organic practices, organics keep toxins out of the air, out of the drinking water and out of the soil. Farmers aren’t exposed to herbicides and pesticides all day; and if food is bought at the market where it’s grown, it reduces transportation costs and emissions.
- Organic foods are often more nutrient rich
Organic Foods get their nutrients straight from healthy, rich, organic dirt. If the dirt is healthy then there should be no need for fertilizers. Non organic crops get their nutrients from synthetic fertilizers made from fossil fuels. Years of not replenishing the soil with organic matter forces farmers to add synthetic fertilizers. This leads to nutrient deficient crops grown from the same thing that fuels our cars. We’ll let you make up your own mind on this one.
- Preserve agricultural diversity
The rampant loss of species occurring today is a major environmental concern. It is estimated that 75% of the genetic diversity of agricultural crops has been lost in the last century. Leaning heavily on one or two varieties of a given food is a formula for devastation. For instance, consider that only a handful of varieties of potatoes dominate the current marketplace, whereas thousands of varieties were once available. Now, dig back to recent history’s potato famine in Ireland, where blight knocked out the whole crop, which consisted of just a few varieties, and millions of people died of starvation. Today, most industrial farms also grow just one crop rather than an array of crops on one piece of land. Ignorance is bliss? Or amnesia is disastrous? Crop rotation is a simple and effective technique used in organic agriculture to reduce the need for pesticides and improve soil fertility. Most conventional food is also extremely hybridized to produce large, attractive specimens, rather than a variety of indigenous strains that are tolerant to regional conditions such as droughts and pests. Many organic farms grow an assorted range of food, taking natural elements and time-tested tradition into account. Diversity is critical to survival.
- Support farming directly
buying organic food is an investment in a cost-effective future. Commercial and conventional farming is heavily subsidized with tax dollars in America. A study at Cornell University determined the cost of a head of commercial iceberg lettuce, typically purchased at 49 cents a head, to be more than $3.00 a head when hidden costs were revealed. The study factored in the hidden costs of federal subsidies, pesticide regulation and testing, and hazardous waste and clean-up. Every year, American tax dollars subsidize billions of dollars for a farm bill that heavily favours commercial agribusiness. Peeling back another layer of the modern farming onion reveals a price tag that cannot be accurately measured but certainly includes other detrimental associated costs such as health problems, environmental damage, and the loss and extinction of wildlife and ecology.
- Keep our children and future safe
putting our money where our mouths are is a powerful position to take in the $1 trillion food industry market in America. Spending dollars in the organic sector is a direct vote for a sustainable future for the many generations to come.