Advocates of organically grown food say it tastes better, is more nutritious and is safer for the environment. Opponents claim this is untrue and cost far too much to be practical. In the end, common sense may settle the dispute as we learn more about the importance of organically grown food to our health and the environment.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, organically grown foods are those grown without the use of synthetic, or man made, pesticides and fertilizers. It also covers the use of growth enhancing hormones, across the board preventive medicines and types of food fed to livestock.
Though the EPA states nothing has been conclusively proved about the importance of organically grown foods, when you consider the old but true adage “You are what you eat” common sense logic sheds a new light on the subject. Science has proved that when we eat foods grown with chemicals, the chemicals are passed to our bodies in small quantities.
These chemicals don’t just dissipate and not all are eliminated in body waste: they are substances our body doesn’t recognize or know how to deal with so, over a period of time they may build up in our tissues, liver, fat or other organs and cause health problems in later life. As already stated, the government hasn’t done enough long term testing yet to rule on this. Can we afford to wait?
Common sense says, “No we can’t wait,” because it does happen and the proof is found when we look at the mercury build-up in some fish as well as other marine life where chemical runoff from farming is a problem.
Not only are these chemicals in the foods we eat, the residue is often on the foods as in herbicides and pesticides used to control weeds and insects. If, it kills roaches, it will kill humans. Why would we take such a risk? To save a little money? Ruined health is a very expensive matter.
Genetic modification of seeds is not done in organic farming. The EPA again says that we don’t know how this affects the human body yet and again we must ask ourselves if we can afford to wait on government to do the necessary testing when our health is at stake.
Another plus for the importance of organically grown food is that it doesn’t harm the environment: air, soil or water. Biologically based pesticides as well as crop rotation, mulching and introducing helpful insects are safe and effective means of pest control in the production of organic foods.
There is no danger of chemical drifting or run-off into waterways when you don’t use them. Building bat and birdhouses attract these winged marvels that eat thousands of insects 24 hours a day.
Organic farmers use natural fertilizers such as compost, organic manure and growing green crops like clover to plow under, none of which hold concentrations of chemicals and are more cost effective than synthetic fertilizers. They therefore hold no threat for the environment or animal life.
The importance of organically grown food is found in the fact that our planet is in danger and therefore, our wellbeing. We can make the hard choices now and pay a little more for our food or we can wait until it is forced on us by a government that slept too long.