Many people have become concerned with the quality and the safety of our food. Mad Cow Disease, Foot and Mouth, and E.coli outbreaks have all contributed to the anxiety felt. The organic farming movement has become increasingly popular over recent years, as people turn to organic food for answers. Eating organically is no longer a fringe activity, and supermarket chains, independent stores, and markets are all active participants in supplying a growing range of products. There are plenty online suppliers who deliver direct to the customer. Fans of organic farming also claim that it produces food superior in flavor.
In the USA and elsewhere, there has been incidents of artificial fertilizers and pesticides leaking into the water table. The worries of the public and the depressed economy of the 1970s influenced many farmers to take the plunge and go organic. As with any niche market, they could ask for premium prices and organic farming proved the salvation of many. Over the years, the cost of organic food has become competitive with conventional supplies and the demand for it just keeps growing.
Eating organically is attractive to meat eaters, vegetarians, and vegans. Almost everything can be purchased in organic form these days. Fruit, vegetables, pulses, meat, and baked goods are all available. Beer and wine drinkers can buy organic too. Parents especially like the idea of completely natural food with no additives being added. Organic farming is a simpler way of producing food, as in our grandparent’s time. After World War II, people did not want to go back to food shortages and methods were adopted to give high yields. Everyone wanted cheap food and plenty of it so farmers were encouraged to use chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides. Meat was affected too by the routine administering of growth hormones and antibiotics to animals. Over the years, consumers have become more aware of the downside and supported organic farming.
In addition to worries about the affects on our bodies from the chemical production of food, the public is concerned with the impact on our environment. It’s impossible to use chemical processes without affecting the water, soil, and all living creatures. Genetically Modified Food is the latest food technology to divide opinion and convert people to organic farming. The UK have mostly rejected it but there is more enthusiasm in the USA The only sure fire way to avoid GM, because of cross contamination, is to buy food grown from organic farming methods.
Supporters of organic food claim that there is approximately 50% more nutrients including vitamins, enzymes, and minerals than in conventionally produced food. Within this growing movement are many farmers who would like to convert to organic farming but find it difficult to make the transition. There is a call to give them more financial help. If the farmer has been using pesticides and artificial fertilizers on his land, it can take up to two years for the land to go back to its pure state. Therefore, the land can’t grow anything during that period and the farmer makes no money on it. Perhaps our governments should start taking organic farming seriously.