Eight Reasons Why We Need Organic
1. Personal Health
Eating organic prevents exposure to agricultural pesticides known to disrupt neurological development in infants and children, increase the risk of prostate cancer, and double the incidence of childhood lymphoma.
The President’s 2010 Cancer Panel Report urges consumers to choose “food grown without pesticides or chemical fertilizers” and to limit “exposure to antibiotics, growth hormones, and toxic run-off from livestock feed lots” “by eating free-range meat raised without these medications.”
An organic diet increases exposure to health-promoting CLAs, flavinoids, antioxidants.
3. Water Quality
Organic cropping systems can prevent nitrogen losses to groundwater and the atmosphere and keep drinking water from being contaminated with nitrates, which can cause blue baby syndrome and other negative health impacts.
4. No Genetic Engineering
Genetically engineered Bt corn harms aquatic insects and disrupts stream ecosystems.
Genetically modified plants have already established themselves in the wild. One study found 86 percent of plants collected outside of agriculture fields in North Dakota tested positive for genetically engineered herbicide tolerance, including combinations of transgenes that are unique to the feral varieties.
5. Soil Quality
Organics are shown to increase soil organic matter, enhance microbial activity and reduce soil acidity, all of which are linked to greater yields.
Organic farming increases biodiversity at every level of the food chain, from bacteria to mammals.
7. Climate Change
The UN-WTO’s International Trade Center found, “organic agriculture has much to offer in mitigation of climate change through its emphasis on closed nutrient cycles and is a particularly resilient and productive system for adaptation strategies.”
8. Feeding the World
Research summarizing 293 published comparisons found a 30% increase in world-wide yields using organic methods. (Source: “What is Organic Food and Why Should I Care?” by Jim Riddle and Bud Markhart for the University of Minnesota)