Organic agriculture is a production method which promotes and enhances biodiversity, protects long-term soil health and reduces the impact of agriculture on climate change by encouraging carbon sequestration in the soil.
In Canada, organic practices are regulated by the Canadian Organic Standards, and producers or processors who use the Canada Organic Logo must meet these standards.
Organic production is designed to:
- respect the environment through the responsible usage of soil, water and air, minimizing agricultural pollution
- protect the long-term health of the soil, encouraging soil biological activity and minimizing soil degradation and erosion
- provide livestock with humane living conditions for their health and well-being
- recycle materials and resources whenever possible and reduce the use of non-renewable resources
Organic production does not permit the use of:
- synthetic pesticides
- synthetic fertilizers
- sewage sludge
- genetically modified organisms
- ionizing radiation
- no growth hormones for animals that produce meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products
No synthetic pesticides or synthetic fertilizers
Organic production does not permit the use of synthetic pesticides or synthetic fertilizers, reducing the amounts of toxins on organic food and in the environment
Organic agriculture respects ecological balance, aiming to reduce the use of non-renewable resources and create more sustainable systems
Protection of water quality
Organic growers and processors use practices that reduce chemical runoff and preserve ground water quality
Organic practices aim to preserve biodiversity through use of traditional seed varieties, crop rotation, and respect for the natural diversity of the local environment
Many organic farms are small, independently run farms which aim to produce food for their local communities. The organic philosophy of sustainability encourages consumers to buy local organic produce whenever possible
Organic production requires that farmers use humane animal husbandry practices, including giving livestock access to open-air runs. The use of synthetic growth hormones is not permitted.
No genetically modified organisms (GMOs)
Organic certification standards do not permit the use of genetic engineering in organic production. Eating organic is a good way to avoid consuming genetically modified foods.
Certification standards assure consumers that organic foods and products have been grown and handled in accordance with sustainable procedures without the use of synthetic pesticides or synthetic fertilizers.
Taste is indeed a matter of personal opinion. However, many consumers of organic product insist that organics simply taste better, with intense flavours unmasked by pesticide residues or wax. Not a believer? Try organic for yourself!