Here’s how the U.S. government actively discourages it
Cover crops and other regenerative agriculture practices are still pigeonholed as conservation practices, not as good farming practices. But if farmers want crop insurance, they have to play by the rules.
Urging political action on pesticide use is another way to help stem ‘collapse of nature’
Buying organic food is among the actions people can take to curb the global decline in insects, according to leading scientists. Urging political action to slash pesticide use on conventional farms is another, say environmentalists.
Intensive agriculture and heavy pesticide use are a major cause of plummeting insect populations, according to the first global review, revealed by the Guardian on Monday. The vanishing of insects threatens a “catastrophic collapse of nature’s ecosystems”, the review concluded, because of their fundamental importance in the food chain, pollination and soil health.
By transitioning, on a global scale, to organic regenerative agriculture, we could feed more people, sequester more carbon and improve the economic prospects for farmers.
Three crises, one solution—a solution that will require a massive overhaul of food and farming policy, and a paradigm change in consumer behavior.
Can we act in time?
A new groundbreaking study proves soils on organic farms store away appreciably larger amounts of carbons – and for longer periods — than typical agricultural soils.
The important study, directed by The National Soil Project at Northeastern University in collaboration with the Organic Center, provides a new significant proof point that organic agricultural practices build healthy soils and can be part of the solution in the fight on global warming.
Growth in demand for organic food in more traditional channels has only helped the sales of small grocers that focus on organic products.
Consumers want to buy organic food, but often they can’t because it’s too expensive. Perdue Foods, the Salisbury-based chicken giant, aims to break that price barrier with a new organic brand it’s launching at a time when organic food is growing nearly six times as fast as the overall food market.
Soil pollution is a worldwide problem which degrades our soils, poisons the food we eat, the water we drink and the air we breathe. Every minute of every day the equivalent of 30 football fields of fertile soil is lost, partly due to irresponsible farming practices.
This is having a huge impact on food security, public health, and well-being, as well as our planet. The good news is sustainable farming practices can heal the soil, build soil fertility, and also increase carbon capture in the soil.
The promise of regenerative organic agriculture
The good news is that this is one very significant component of climate change that appears to be well within our grasp.
Some groups want to compete with the organic label and raise the standards for eco-conscious consumers. But others worry that another label could end up sowing market confusion.
Humans are to blame for the current pace of climate change, so, it falls to us to do something about it. Thankfully, there’s something very simple you can do every day to make a difference:
By making small changes to your diet, you can significantly decrease your impact on our climate.
Of all the meaningless terms in the food labeling world—and there are a lot—”natural” might be one of the worst. The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) recently sued Hormel, the company behind brands like Applegate and Dinty Moore, for misleading customers with its “natural” label.
Organic farming promotes natural resistance to common food-borne human pathogens, according to a study that evaluates the benefit of soil organisms. By protecting valuable species of dung beetles and soil bacteria, organic farming systems naturally act to clean up and decompose potentially pathogen-bearing animal feces.
The Impossible Burger, a new “plant-based burger” marketed by Impossible Foods, is now appearing on diners’ plates in selected California restaurants. The appearance of these GMO burgers signals a new wave of genetically engineered foods created by gene editing – a technique that natural health experts say is insufficiently tested. Now, many consumers – blissfully unaware of the “burger’s” GMO origins – are already chowing down on the Impossible Burger.
U.S. shoppers are still paying more for organic food, but the price premium is falling as organic options multiply.
Last year, organic food and beverages cost an average of 24 cents more per unit than conventional food, or about 7.5 percent more, according to Nielsen. That was down from a 27 cent, or 9 percent, premium in 2014.
In addition to fragrances and chemicals used in the bleaching process, the risk of pesticide exposure may be the biggest reason to switch to organic tampons.
Workers should be able to earn a paycheck without putting their lives or their health and well-being on the line. Yet every day, an estimated 137 U.S. workers succumb to diseases caused by on-the-job exposure to toxic chemicals and other hazardous substances, and hundreds of thousands more suffer from nonfatal illnesses. In fact, more people die annually from toxic exposures at work than from car crashes, firearms, or opioids.
Toxicologist Linda Birnbaum, who directs the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), has called for “an overall reduction in the use of agricultural pesticides” due to multiple concerns for human health, stating that “existing US regulations have not kept pace with scientific advances showing that widely used chemicals cause serious health problems at levels previously assumed to be safe.
Those who frequently eat organic foods lowered their overall risk of developing cancer, a study published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine finds. Specifically, those who primarily eat organic foods were more likely to ward off non-Hodgkin lymphoma and postmenopausal breast cancer compared to those who rarely or never ate organic foods.