By Amy Jackson Sabrina Katz Andressa Hara-Drohan
Definition: Produced or involving production without the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or other artificial agents. Organic Requirements:The cows that are producing the milk cannot be exposed to prohibited material, including: most chemical fertilizers, herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, synthetic silage inoculants, etc. All of the feed provided to the cows must have a current certified organic status. “No prohibited health materials or feed supplements are to be fed or used in the 12 months previous to selling organic milk (no antibiotics, non-approved parasiticides, no minerals or vitamins with prohibited additives such as mineral oil or artificial flavorings).”(MOSES, 2009)
400 Harsh Chemicals Organophosphates ◦ Early 19 th Century ◦ Used By Germans in 1930’s WWII Neurotoxins ◦ Kills by attacking nervous system and brains ◦ Well Known Organophosphates Diazinon, Disulfoton, Azinphos-Methyl and Fonofos.
Women With Breast Cancer 5-9 Times More Likely to Have Pesticide In Blood Stream Sprecher Institute For Comparative Cancer Study ◦ 1993-1997 ◦ 309 out of 30,452 ◦ Pesticides That Put Them at Risk Phenoxy Herbicide, Organochlorine Insecticide and Herbicide and Organophosphate Insecticides Organophosphates account for 38% of all pesticides used
OrganicConventional 35 Gallons Per Week6-7 Gallons Per Day Synthetic Version of Bovine Somatotropin also known as rbST or BGH.
$1 Million Grant Oregon, Cornell, University of Wisconsin- Madison Requirements to Participate ◦ Minimum of 30 Cows ◦ Maximum of 500 Cows Oregon StateCornell-New York Wisconsin- Madison 25 Organic 25 Conventional 75 Organic 25 Conventional 100 Organic 50 Conventional
From 2001 to 2008, the French Agency for Food Safety set up an expert working group to perform an exhaustive and critical evaluation of the nutritional and sanitary quality of organic food. The AFSSA says they aimed for the highest quality scientific standards during the evaluation.
Organic plant products contain more dry matter (more nutrient dense) Have higher levels of minerals Contain more anti-oxidants such as phenols and salicylic acid (known to protect against cancers heart disease and many other health problems) Organic vegetables contain far less nitrates, about 50% less than conventional vegetables (high nitrate levels are also linked to diabetes and Alzheimer’s) Organic cereals contain similar levels of mycotoxins as conventional ones.
“When the USDA tested 518 samples of fresh strawberries in 2000, it found pesticides on 91 percent. Two-thirds had two or more separate residues and a third had from three to seven. In all, it detected twenty-five different chemicals. The $1.1 billion California strawberry industry isn’t an anomaly in pesticide us, ranking fifth in total pounds used in the state (wine grapes rank number one).
Developed the Guide based on data from nearly 87,000 tests for pesticide residues in produce conducted between 2000 and 2007 and collected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
EWG research has found that people who eat the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables consume an average of 10 pesticides a day. Those who eat the 15 least contaminated conventionally-grown fruits and vegetables ingest fewer than 2 pesticides daily.
Growing organically supports a biologically diverse, healthy environment. Organic farming practices help protect our water resources. Organic agricultures increase the land’s productivity. Organic production limits toxic and long-lasting chemicals in our environment. Buying organic supports small, independent family farms and businesses. Organic farmers are less reliant on non-renewable fossil fuels. Organic products meet stringent USDA standards. Buying organic is a direct investment in the long-term future of our planet. Organic farmers preserve diversity of plant species. In my opinion organic food tastes better. One major complaint about organic farming is that it does not yield as high of a production as corporate farming. Meaning that you could don’t feed the whole world on organic farming alone. *On the other hand, if you were concerned about local employment this would not be a negative.
All products labeled as “organic” must be certified by a USDA- accredited certifying agency. “100% organic” products must contain only organically produced material, excluding water and salt, and name of the certifying agent on the package. Use of the USDA “organic” seal is optional. “Organic” products must be at least 95% organically produced ingredients; remainder must consist of substances approved on the USDA’s National List of non-organically produced agricultural products that are not commercially available in organic form. The label may also state the percentage of organic ingredients, and the name of the certifying agent must appear. The next type is “made with organic ingredients.” These products must contain at least 70% organic ingredients; remainder can consist of conventionally grown agricultural ingredients or approved non agricultures substances form the USDA’s National List. Product may display “Made with Organic…” Use of the USDA organic seal is prohibited.
In short, it's beef, pork or poultry that has been raised and processed according to strict USDA Organic guidelines. All certified organic meat is independently inspected and traced at every phase of production-from the farm to supermarket-to ensure compliance with the USDA National Organic Standards.
100% Certified Organic Feed: Organic livestock are fed only 100% certified organic feed or grass grown without toxic and persistent pesticides or fertilizers that are harmful to our environment.
No Animal Byproducts: USDA Organic regulations forbid animal byproducts of any form in livestock feed, a practice suspected to be linked to Mad Cow Disease in beef.
Humane Treatment: Organic rules promote the humane treatment of livestock and are based on the natural behaviors of the animals.
No Antibiotics: The use of antibiotics in feed is strictly forbidden. This practice is common in conventional agriculture where it's used to accelerate livestock growth and prevent the diseases common in confined living quarters.
“Studies have shown that the overuse of antibiotics in livestock has resulted in an increase of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, a serious threat to human health.” (The Organic Report)
Preventative Health Practices: Organic livestock are raised using natural health practices designed to prevent disease. Natural Processing Methods: Organic processing rules forbid the use of synthetic chemicals, artificial preservatives or harmful additives such as sodium nitrite.
In the scientific American magazine they published an article on “The Rise of Vertical Farms.” The idea behind this story is that if we start growing crops in city skyscrapers we would use less water and fossil fuels than outdoor farming. We would eliminate agricultural run off, and provide fresh food. I believe that they might be on to something in this article.
Overall, we believe that organic food is better based on our research. It is very scary to think of all of the things we have put in our bodies and we continue to put in our children’s bodies. We are not scientist but the issue is common sense. If we grow, eat, and sell organic, the rewards are overwhelming. In the future organic farmers could eventually yield a higher sale over conventional, which will support more local business, thus building a better community.