Friday, April 20, 2007

Countdown to Earth Day

As usual, from Stonyfield farm

Choosing Organic Food
Buying organic is one way we can leave a better world to future generations. Organic refers to the way food is grown and processed. It is an ecological system that relies on healthy rich soil to produce plants that resist pests and diseases.
Organic farming prohibits the use of toxic and persistent chemicals in favor of cutting-edge practices that work with nature, instead of against it, such as crop rotation, cover crop planting, beneficial insect release, and composting.
Organic farming can be catalyst for rural economic development by offering an alternative market where small farmers can receive a premium for their crops.
Pesticide use in the U.S. has increased ten-fold from 1945 to 1989, yet total crop loss from pests nearly doubled in that period from 7% to 13%.
By refraining from using toxic chemicals, organic farmers may contribute to the survival of populations of songbirds, bees, fish, bald eagles, wetlands species, and many other species that have been hurt by chemicals in the environment.
Since organic practices prohibit the use of toxic and persistent chemicals, there is no risk of pesticide-contaminated water sources.
Organic is one of the fastest growing trends in the food industry. With annual sales of about $6.6 billion, and growth rates of at least 20% annually throughout the 1990's, there's no slow down in sight. As more companies produce it and more stores sell it, buying organic is becoming one of the easiest and most valuable things we can do to reduce the
impact that food has on our world.
- To learn more about organic, click
here.- To learn more about organic farming methods, click here.- To find out about organic options in your state, click here.- To understand the labeling of organic food, click here.- For the latest news on organic food, click here, here and here.- To see what you and your family should know about pesticides on food, click here, and here.- To learn more about the danger that pesticides pose for children, click here.- For more information on pesticides, check out EPA, NCAP, NCAMP and Panna.

We buy organic whenever we can. We do pay a lot more for it and I'm grateful we can afford it. For people who can't afford it, a good resource for veggies is local farmers' markets (which we don't have here, unfortunately). If you live in Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Food Coop is a great source.

I've found that organic gardening is actually much less expensive than conventional gardening. It does require a little more work, but really not that much more. What it does take more of, is acceptance of "blemishes". You won't necessarily have perfect lettuce with no bug holes. These things don't affect the flavor at all.

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