From the 1970s through today, people have become increasingly concerned with the origins of their food. Organic farming has become a hot topic for many who want to know how their food was grown, and about its journey from the soil to their plate.
But why is organic farming so important? And how can I find organic farms near me?
Keep reading for a definition of this farming practice and to find out the essentials of farming organically. You can also learn more about what we, Earnest Agriculture, are doing here (earnest.ag/technology).
What Is Organic Farming?
Organic farming is a practice that favors the use of natural methods and materials to encourage crop growth. It operates in contrast to modern farming which uses synthetic chemical processes. It advocates returning to a more natural method of farming, producing crops in a sustainable way.
Conventional farming practices value profit margins and crop yields above all else. Organic farms mark a return to more traditional methods. For certain crops, the consumer may face higher prices due to the additional labor and lower yields.
You can use this tool to find the organic farms or Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) operating in your area.
What Are the Benefits?
There are many benefits that come with doing your food shopping from local organic farms. By opting for organic produce, you can help make important changes to the local environment as well as the quality of the food you consume.
Conventional farming utilizes potentially harmful chemical pesticides that can be dangerous to animals and humans. What’s more, weeds can become resistant to synthetic pesticides. This results in an ongoing cycle of using stronger and stronger chemicals.
Organic farming also helps to encourage greater biodiversity, lower levels of pollution, and healthier soil.
Finally, organic agriculture also helps in the fight against climate change. Organic farming practices help to lock carbon in the soil, as well as building soil health. This makes the earth more likely to recover from severe storms and hurricanes.
What Methods Are Used in Organic Farming?
The specific methods of organic farming differ from farm to farm and from region to region. However, the general principles remain the same.
These include using natural rather than synthetic fertilizers and encouraging biodiversity through crop rotation. Finally, they avoid all Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) which are used to improve crop yields.
For example, the Honey Brook Organic Farm in New Jersey has used crop rotation to great effect. They sustain low levels of cucumber beetles and the tobacco mosaic virus while allowing the ‘good’ insects to carry on thriving. Crop rotation also helps to keep the soil rich in vitamins and minerals, as different plants take different elements from the earth.
Now You Know All About Organic Farming
We’ve now covered the basics of organic farming, so the next time you are doing your grocery shopping, you’ll know exactly what you’re looking at. What’s more, we hope you’re now inspired to check out the local organic farms near you, to see exactly who to buy from in your area.