Farming has been around for ages. At a point in time, this was what most people did until other things developed such as the automobile industry.
The old way of farming otherwise known as non-organic involved the use of the following to fight pest infestations and to produce better crops.
The first pesticides and herbicides. This was discovered in foods that appear to have highly toxic chemical residues.
Thought the FDA has already banned these fertilizers from being used, chemical companies export it. Since some crops are imported, this comes back to the States and is eaten at home.
The second is contaminated sewage sludge. The idea was to use human waste to fertilize non-organic crops.
This wasn’t a bad idea but this is also mixed with chemical and industrial waste before being sent to the treatment plant. Tests have shown that large amounts of this in the human body may contribute to chronic illnesses.
The third is the use hormones, antibiotics and remains of other animals. This is usually found in eggs, meat and dairy products. Doctors consider this as a disaster waiting to happen since incidents such as mad cow disease has already happened. This problem could even be worse for humans if this is ingested.
The last is irradiation. Spices are exposed to radiation to kill bacteria or microorganisms that may be present. This also does more harm than good since it can lead to various diseases.
Recently, studies have shown a different view since the chemicals and other substances used are toxic which caused various illnesses and deaths. To alleviate this threat, the government has decided to make changes in the agricultural industry.
It encourages farmer to shift from the old ways to something that is better and safer for everyone. This is what organic farming is all about.
This kind of farming aims to develop crops and livestock using the most environmental, humane, economic systems available to date. For this to work, 2 things are needed. First is fertile land that can be used to plant different crops. The other is people who will work on the land.
European countries are also veering away from the old approach and are practicing it. These countries call it ecological agriculture which relies heavily on taking care of the environment.
Organic farming works on the following things:
1. Making sure the soil can be used for a very long time without the use fertilizers that were used in non-organic farming.
2. Giving the crops proper care using soil organisms and not by using pesticides.
3. The recycling of livestock manures and organic materials which includes crop residues.
4. Controlling the growth of weeds and insect infestation through crop rotation. This means not using anything that science has used in the ways of non-organic farming.
5. The growth of farm animals by paying attention to the evolutionary adaptations and respect for the natural process. This means that genetic engineering is strictly prohibited.
6. Lastly, the effects of this method on the environment.
In terms of which is better, everyone can see that this new approach is safer and better than the old one. It no longer uses genetic engineering, irradiation and sewage sludge which were the things used to make non-organic produce.
It is not easy though to stop non-organic produce to enter the market.
This is because some products that are the demanded by the consumer have to be imported. Even if there efforts on the part of the government to ban the use of such substances, there are no regulations in the countries that export it to the United States.
Unless there is a regulation that is agreed by that country or the crops that are imported can be made locally in a major scale, this is something that cannot be eradicated. The best thing to do is to only buy organic foods that could substitute those that are not.
This requires more support from the consumer and tougher government legislation for the safety of the public.
The number of organic farmers has more than doubled in the past 16 years. This will continue to grow as long people see the bigger picture.