Organic pesticides generally come from things in nature that can be used to control pests. This includes substances derived from plants, minerals and microorganisms. Many organic pesticides are less toxic than their synthetic counterparts, but that doesn't mean they're safe or cause no harm to the environment. Yes, organic farming practices use fewer synthetic pesticides that have been found to be harmful to the environment.
But industrial organic farms use their own barrage of chemicals that are still harmful to the environment, refusing to support technologies that could reduce or eliminate the use of these products together. Take, for example, the firm stance of organic farming against genetically modified organisms (GMOs). When people buy organic food, they often make the wrong assumption that there are no pesticides. It's true that organic production often uses fewer hazardous chemicals, but certain pesticides are allowed.
That's not to say there's no hope for organic agriculture; better technology could bridge the production gap, allowing organic methods to produce on a par with conventional agriculture. He complained about how everyone praised local organic farms for being so environmentally conscious, even though they sprayed their crops with pesticides all the time, while his family farm had no credit for being pesticide-free (they're not organic because they use a non-organic herbicide once a year). Research on organic products structurally shows less pesticide residues than conventional products; this is one of the reasons why manufacturers of baby food often opt for organic products, because babies are particularly sensitive to the effects of pesticide residues. Why the government doesn't monitor the use of organic pesticides and fungicides is a very good question, especially considering that many organic pesticides that are also used by conventional farmers are used more intensively than synthetic ones because of their lower levels of effectiveness.
When the Soil Association, a major accreditation body for organic products in the UK, asked consumers why they bought organic food, 95% of them said their main reason was to avoid pesticides. In the same survey, in which 95% of organic consumers in the UK said they buy organic products to avoid pesticides, more than two-thirds of those surveyed said that organic products and meats taste better than non-organic products. However, there are a number of organic pest control methods that can be used without endangering bee populations. Canadian scientists pitted “reduced risk” organic and synthetic pesticides against each other to control a problematic pest, soybean aphid.
The apparent contradiction between organic labeling and potentially harmful pesticide practices may lie in the relative leniency of USDA organic guidelines, Gillman says. It remains true that for many non-agricultural readers, the initial blog post was essentially the source of most of what they thought they knew about the use of organic pesticides, and people continue to share the link to this day as evidence that the use of organic pesticides is more of a concern than the use of organic pesticides conventional. He tried to compare the best organic insecticide to the best conventional insecticide and the best organic fungicide to the best conventional fungicide, but ended up doing two insecticides vs. As Michael Pollan, best-selling author and supporter of organic, said in an interview with Organic Gardening:.
But the real reason organic farming isn't greener than conventional agriculture is that, while it might be better for small-scale local environments, organic farms produce far less food per unit of land than conventional ones. . .
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