Monday, October 15, 2007

Blog Action Day: Help the Environment with Organic Foods

Today is "Blog Action Day", to focus on the environment. I decided to post about how Organic foods and products can help the environment. First, let me start off by saying that I am not a "tree-hugger" type. I have never thought of myself as an environmentalist by any measure. I first started to learn about the benefits of organic as I researched the organic dog and cat foods that are available. As a buyer for a large pet specialty retailer with over 900 stores, I had the opportunity to learn a great deal about organic foods. I learned that organic products follow strict USDA guidelines for farming techniques, ingredient procurement & handling, tracking and production; as well as being subject to independent agency certification. The benefits of organic foods are many: no pesticides, no growth-hormones, no synthetic chemicals, no antibiotics, no genetically modified ingredients, no artificial fertilizers, no additives, no food irradiation, and no chemical ripening.
As I learned about organic pet foods, I became more interested in buying organic foods for myself as well.

There are many environmental benefits of growing organic foods. The following points are from our friends at Wikipedia:
Organic farms do not release synthetic pesticides into the environment — some of which have the potential to harm local wildlife.
  • Organic farms are better than conventional farms at sustaining diverse ecosystems, i.e., populations of plants and insects, as well as animals.
  • When calculated either per unit area or per unit of yield, organic farms use less energy and produce less waste, e.g., waste such as packaging materials for chemicals.
And here is some great information from The Organic Center about organic products:

"People are recognizing the vital connections between diet, health, agriculture and the environment; how we use this information to make choices every day determines how the Earth is used.

  • Credible scientific data regularly shows that organic production of food and other products promotes both environmental and human health.
  • Citizens need credible, peer-reviewed scientific evidence on how organic products and systems benefit human health and the environment in order for more people to choose organic products and thus shift.
  • Convert more land into organic production. Increasing organic production can protect human health and the natural world by reducing unsustainable practices including the widespread use and abuse of toxic substances.
  • Consumers, civic organizations, government agencies, and the many businesses that make up the organic chain of custody -- from "seed to table" -- all benefit from having access to credible peer-reviewed scientific information about the organic "benefit." Each plays a key role in the promotion and proving of public and planetary health."
I'd like to reinforce one last point: organic crops support renewable resources and sustainable farming techniques, something that will benefit future generations for years to come.
So what can you do?
It's easy
. Start buying some organic products. Most stores now carry a decent selection or organic products. Even if you buy a few organic items, you will help increase the overall consumer demand for organic, which over time will increase the number of farms that follow organic standards. Thanks for reading!
-Rick Rockhill


bunnygirl said...

I've been eating organic for years and now I can't go back to the preservative-heavy foods I grew up on. I can taste the chemicals in them. It's kind of scary to think that those chemical tastes once seemed normal to me.

Buy organic! :-)

whimsicalnbrainpan said...

I am very lucky. I live in an area where there are a lot of organic farmers. The tailgate markets they have in the summer are great.

Anonymous said...

Great Post! I am quite the greeney myself, but also not radical to the point of being labelled.
Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope to see you and read more of you in the future.

karma lennon said...

I think organic products are the ultimate. I dated an organic farmer in college and learned about the benefits from watching him work and seeing how he did things. Plus I really think organic just plain tastes better! :)

marlupe said...

I'm glad you posted about this. I agree with Bunnygirl and Karma that organic foods taste better. Its such a great way to make a difference in your own health and help the environment too!

TWISI said...

i eat organic whenever possible, thanks for the tips!

Lena said...

Organic produce I would try and choose but as a budgeting mum, the price is often too much for the preference.

I'm a big grower of my own fruit and veg - all with TLC, may I add!

MONA said...

I agree. Organic food is really good.
The other variety has so many harmful elements that are injurious to our health.specially the chemically riped food variety. They do us more harm than good.

EBEZP said...

I don't hold with the whole organic food thing but I am all in favour of bloggers uniting for specific causes. Well done Rick.

snowelf said...

I love getting stuff straight out of my grandparent's garden. And luckily, since I live in a HUGE farmland, the majority of the stuff in our stores comes from local farmers and it's awesome!


Kerry and Rachel said...

Great post. Thanks for sharing all the information. Also, thanks for letting us know about Blog Action Day. What a neat thing.

Canadian flake said...

While I completely agree with all the information I read here...I find this particular subject also irritating in my local area.

As a diabetic(of less than a year), I am trying to eat better and get it under control. Just yesterday, I was in the grocery store and was looking at organically grown bananas...

I understand that they are better for us...but they cost THREE TIMES the amount of the other bananas...such was the case for the carrots (more than double the cost) and tomatoes (about double the cost).

Of course this shouldn't matter...but we are a family that works very hard and still struggles to make ends meet...

guess only the wealthy in Canada get to eat healthy..lmao.

Anonymous said...

I try to buy a few organic items when I shop, like the milk and produce. I'll buy other organic stuff whenever I can. informative post, thanks for sharing.

DvS said...

Have you read the Omnivore's Dilemma? I just finished it and it is fantastic. I would highly recommend it to anyone. It is extremely well written and not at all preachy. I especially like the parts about "industrial organic" and the idea of "supermarket pastoral".

donna said...

this is an exellent post! what organic pet foods do you recommend? I'd like to check them out.


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