Organic growing is where farmers use natural methods to cultivate their land rather than using chemicals, fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides. Organic farmers use methods such as beneficial animals/insects; plant diversity; more space; and good old fashioned hand labour, in order to get the most out of their crops. What are some of the benefits? 1. Organic food tastes better. Organic farming starts with the nourishment of the soil, which leads to the nourishment of the plant and, ultimately, our palate. Many people prefer organic food because they consider it tastes better. 2. Organic food has higher levels of nutrients. There is now plentiful research findings that show organic food are far superior in vitamin, mineral and nutrient content. They are especially higher in antioxidants, vitamin C, iron, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus. Organic foods have higher levels (up to six times) of salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is produced naturally in plants as a protective compound against stress and disease. Salicylic acid acts as an anti-inflammatory and helps combat hardening of the arteries. 3. Organic farming helps protect water quality. Pesticides and other chemicals widely used in conventional farming contaminate ground water and rivers and pollute primary sources of drinking water. 4. Organic food is free of artificial additives. Organic food doesn’t contain food additives which can cause health problems such as heart disease, osteoporosis, migraines and hyperactivity. The use of antibiotics, anti-microbial, hormones and other growth promo ants are prohibited in organic production. In the case that animals are treated with veterinary drugs or chemicals, they are prohibited from being sold as organic. The use of synthetic chemicals as preservatives, colourings, antioxidants etc is also prohibited in the processing of organic foods. 5. Chemical residues are missing or at very low levels in organically produced food. Many studies show that most conventionally farmed foods have pesticide and other chemical residues. Over 400 chemical pesticides are routinely used in conventional farming and residues are often present in non-organic food. Research has shown that 30 percent of insecticides, 60 percent of herbicides and 90 percent of fungicides are known to cause cancer. These chemicals can also lead to nervous and endocrine problems.
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