Why I Still Think You Should Eat Organic
You’ve heard it before and have probably uttered it yourself. I know I have. “Organic food is just too expensive.” But then I learned what it means to be organic. What I didn’t know is that when conventional (non “organic”) agriculturalists grow their crops they have a top ten list of traits they want to see in their product, and taste as well as nutritious content is not among that list. What is? Things like shelf life – how long a veggie lasts on the shelf before it goes bad; Durability – the crop’s strength and ability to make it through shipment, and Size & Color – According to these producers, consumer stats show that people like to buy fruits and veggies that “look uniform”. What will companies do to ensure their crops look good, last through shipment, and stay longer on the shelf? What won’t they do?! I’ve learned just about everything from pesticides that harm our environment, to artificial fertilizers that lack essential nutrients, to genetic modification and its unknown side effects. The net result is produce that is statistically nutrient deficient when compared to its organic ancestor. This means there’s less vitamins and minerals within each fruit and veggie. This here is a fact. You see, conventional farmers use only 3 nutrients to feed their crops: Potassium, Nitrate, and Phosphorus (NPK). The net result of this imbalance of minerals is dead soil. What do I mean by dead soil? Well folks, believe it or not, healthy soil is a living organism. It contains organisms that work together to create a nutrient-rich cycle of rebirth within it. Conventional farming kills this process, and then must rely on NPK to grow anything. In the future, the area that was farmed conventionally will remain a dessert – nothing will grow on it, and bad things like erosion will happen, destroying ecosystems and preventing new life. That’s gross!
So let’s talk about Organic Farming.
Organic Farmers do one thing that no other farmer does: they feed the soil. What does this mean? Well, soil is indeed a living organism: It isn’t just a bunch of dirt. A combination of things like bacteria, fungus, minerals, organic matter, air, water, clay, and little itty bitty animals like nematodes, work together to create a nutrient & energy producing haven. When all of these players are in balance, the soil becomes its own ecosystem, producing luscious flora that, in the wild, pretty much sustains itself. So organic farmers do everything they can to ensure this balance is maintained on their fields. This means that they find non-soil-threatening ways of keeping their crops free of pests and weeds. But more importantly to consumers, it means that they produce foods that are more nutrient-rich.
In a day and age where vital nutrients are lacking due to processed foods (everything is microwaved and dinners come in plastic boxes), diseases are on the rise. The S.A.D (Standard American Diet) is already nutrient-deficient and consumers cannot afford to lack vitamins and minerals from their veggies too. Although it’s better to eat non-organic veggies than none at all, only organic fruits & vegetables provide you with a synergy of nutrients and minerals that are lost in conventional farming. Factually speaking, organically grown foods have an overall nutrient & mineral increase of 25% compared to their conventional counterparts!
So next time you’re in the grocery section of your local store, don’t think of that organic apple as being more costly: Think about getting what you pay for – Doesn’t that conventional apple seem cheap?