This month begins the discussion and celebration of organic food, known as ‘Organic September’. The purpose of the month is to examine organic food, understand what organic means and to extol both its benefits and drawbacks. We here at The Consumer Brand always give the option for our community to decide if they want their produce to be organic or not, so we thought we would write a little blog piece discussing all things organic! Some people may love organic food, others not, but the point is that here at The Consumer Brand you decide! So let’s dive straight in and start talking about organic food!
What does organic mean?
Let’s begin by defining what organic food means in the UK, as the definition changes from country to country. The Department for Agriculture and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) states that:
‘Organic food is the product of a farming system which avoids the use of man-made fertilisers, pesticides; growth regulators and livestock feed additives. Irradiation and the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or products produced from or by GMOs are generally prohibited by organic legislation.
Organic agriculture is a systems approach to production that is working towards environmentally, socially and economically sustainable production. Instead, the agricultural systems rely on crop rotation, animal and plant manures, some hand weeding and biological pest control’.
So the short answer to what organic means is that it’s farming without man-made chemicals and a focus on farming that seeks to go in line with nature rather than overtaking it.
Benefits of organic
Organic farming has benefits for both the land and the overall produce. As organic agriculture pays close attention to nature, by using fewer chemicals on the land such as artificial fertilisers, it can avoid polluting waterways. It also means more wildlife and biodiversity on farms that benefit the environment. Organic farming can also offer benefits for animal welfare, as animals are required to be kept in more natural, free range conditions. In regards to the food, there are some studies which suggest organic food is healthier and better for people to eat than non-organic food. So organic farming in general has the dual benefits of being better for the environment, and also better for people.
Drawbacks of organic
There are, however, some drawbacks to organic. Perhaps the biggest drawback as to why people don’t eat as much organic food as non-organic food is the price. As the organic practices simply don’t produce as much quantity of food as other practices, the price has to be higher. For people who live close to where the organic food is produced the prices may be cheaper, but for those who live away from organic farms prices will be expensive.
There are, however, some drawbacks to organic. Perhaps the biggest drawback as to why people don’t eat as much organic food as non-organic food is the price. As the organic practices simply don’t produce as much quantity of food as other practices, the price has to be higher. For people who live close to where the organic food is produced the prices may be cheaper, but for those who live away from organic farms prices will be expensive. Another drawback to organic relates to the point of it. It’s possible to have responsible farms that are good for the environment, kind to nature, and provide heavy substance food for people whilst not being organic. In the UK, we are fortunate to have a brilliant farming culture that matches the values of the British public in how they want their produce. Non-organic farming doesn’t mean that it’s necessarily bad for nature and wildlife.
The choice of organic is yours
Ultimately, here at The Consumer Brand the choice of whether your food is organic or not is yours. We understand that for many people who are conscious about the environment and animal welfare they would want to have a diet made entirely of organic food. This is not always possible for many reasons, but not solely eating organic food doesn’t mean you can’t have a positive impact on the change you want to see in the food you eat. The Consumer Brand will offer the option of ensuring our products are organic, but there will also always be other options that guarantee wildlife and nature are looked after during farming and food production! As always, the choice is yours!