The world population is growing rapidly and it is becoming more and more difficult to provide food. What is needed is sustainable agriculture and food production for all. As income from agriculture decreases with technological developments and chemical-based agricultural practices, it becomes unsustainable and loses its attractiveness. In addition, pollution and climate change and other negative external factors arising from the use of fossil fuel-based chemicals make agriculture difficult.
Reasons of Organic Agriculture
Despite its dietary choices, organic food is the best choice ever made, and that means adopting organic farming methods. The reasons for adopting organic farming methods are as follows:
To accumulate the benefits of nutrients
Food from organic farms is loaded with nutrients such as vitamins, enzymes, minerals and other micronutrients compared to those on traditional farms. This is because organic farms are managed and fed using sustainable practices. In fact, some past researchers have collected and tested vegetables, fruits, and grains from both organic farms and traditional farms. As a result of the studies, it has been concluded that the foodstuffs on organic farms have much more nutrients than those obtained from commercial or traditional farms.
Statistics show that genetically modified foods (GMOs) contaminate natural food sources at a real frightening speed and have serious effects beyond comprehension. What poses a major threat to GMO products is that they are not labeled. Therefore, sticking to organic foods obtained from real sources is the only way to reduce these serious effects of GMOs.
Natural and better taste
People who have tasted organically grown foods confirm that they are natural and taste better. Natural and superior flavor comes from balanced and nourished soil. Organic farmers always prioritize quality over quantity.
Direct support to agriculture
Buying food from organic farmers is a cost-effective investment for the future. Traditional farming methods have received huge subsidies and tax breaks from most governments in the past years. This has led to the proliferation of commercially produced foods that increase dangerous diseases such as cancer. It is time for governments to invest in organic farming technologies to reduce these problems and secure the future. It all starts with purchasing food from known organic sources.
Preserving agricultural diversity
It’s normal to hear news about extinct species these days, and that should be a major concern. It is estimated that 75 percent of agricultural product diversity has disappeared in the last century alone. The leaning towards a form of farming will be the recipe for disasters in the future, and a classic example of this is the potato. Although there were different varieties of potatoes, today only one type of potato is offered for sale in markets or markets. This is dangerous because if pests eradicate the type of potato that exists today, the future potato could risk being lost. Therefore, organic farming methods that produce disease and pest resistant crops are needed to guarantee a sustainable future.
Prevention of antibiotics, drugs and hormones in animal products
Commercial dairy and meat products are highly sensitive to contamination with hazardous substances. A statistic published in an American magazine revealed that more than 90% of the chemicals consumed by the population came from meat tissue and dairy products. According to a report by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the vast majority of pesticides are consumed by the population originating from poultry, meat, eggs, fish and dairy products, as the animals and birds that produce these products are at the top of the food chain. This means that they are fed food loaded with chemicals and toxins. Medicines, antibiotics and growth hormones are also injected into these animals and thus transferred directly to meat and dairy products. Hormone supplementation given to farmed fish, beef and dairy products significantly contributes to the consumption of chemicals. These chemicals only come with many complications such as genetic problems, cancer risks, tumor growth, and other complications in early adolescence.
Basic Features of Organic Agriculture
There are six main characteristics of organic agriculture and these are as follows.
1. Preserving soil quality and promoting biological activity by using organic material,
2. Providing crop nutrients indirectly by using soil microorganisms,
3. Nitrogen fixation in soils using legumes,
4. Weed and pest control based on methods such as crop rotation, biodiversity, natural predators, organic fertilizers, appropriate chemicals, thermal and biological interventions,
5. Raising livestock, housing, nutrition, health, breeding and breeding care,
6. To have a wider environment, to take care of the protection of natural habitats and wildlife,
Four Principles of Organic Agriculture
There are four basic principles of organic agriculture and these are as follows.
Organic farming must contribute to the health and well-being of the soil, plants, animals, people, soil. It is the nourishment of mental, physical, ecological and social well-being, such as providing pollution and chemical-free, nutritious food for humans.
Justice is evident in protecting the equality and justice of the world shared between both humans and other living beings. Organic farming provides a good quality of life and helps reduce poverty. Natural resources should be used wisely and preserved for future generations.
Ecological balance principle
Organic agriculture should be modeled on living ecological systems. Organic farming methods must conform to ecological balances and cycles in nature.
Organic farming must be applied carefully and responsibly to benefit present, future generations and the environment.
Benefits of Organically Grown Foods and Agricultural Products
Organically grown foodstuffs and agricultural products have benefits. These benefits are as follows:
Compared to foods that have been traditionally grown for longer, organic foods are much richer in nutrients. The nutritional value of a food item is determined by its mineral and vitamin content. Organic farming increases the nutrients of the soil that pass to plants and animals.
It helps to stay healthy
Organic foods do not contain any chemicals. This is because organic farmers do not use chemicals at any stage of the food growing process like their other commercial counterparts. Organic farmers use natural farming techniques that do not harm people and the environment, and these foods keep dangerous diseases such as cancer and diabetes at bay.
Food does not contain poison
In organic agriculture, no toxic chemicals, pesticides and weed pesticides are used. Research shows that a large proportion of the population that feeds on toxic substances used in traditional agriculture is the victim of diseases such as cancer. Since organic agriculture avoids these toxins, it reduces the diseases caused by them.
Organic foods have high fidelity
In order for any product to be considered an organic food, it must undergo quality controls and the creation process must be carefully investigated. The same rule applies to international markets. This is a great victory for consumers, as they buy real organic food. These quality controls and research are sorted out by offering commercially produced foods instead of people who want to take advantage of the organic food label.
There is a huge misconception that organic foods are relatively expensive. The truth is that they are actually cheaper, because expensive and harmful pesticides do not need to be applied. In fact, it is possible to buy organic food directly from the source at really affordable prices.
The truth is that the quality of food is also determined by its taste. Organic foods often taste better than other foods. The sugar content in organically grown fruits and vegetables provides them with extra flavor. also, the quality of fruit and vegetables can be measured using Brix analysis.
Organic farming methods are environmentally friendly
Chemicals used in commercial farms seriously pollute the soil and nearby water supplies. And this affects plants, animals and people negatively. Since these harsh chemicals are not used in organic agriculture, the environment continues to be protected.
Longer shelf life
Organic plants have more metabolic and structural integrity in their cellular structure than traditional crops. And this allows organic food to be stored longer.
Organic farming is preferred because it combats pests and weeds in a non-toxic way, involves less input costs for cultivation, promotes biodiversity and environmental protection, while maintaining ecological balance.