Tracing The History of Organic Farming

organic farming

John Mesko, the executive director of the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) said during the 2018 MOSES Organic Farming Conference that organic farming is not a trend and that “we are here to stay.” For 30 years, Mesko worked together with a group of dedicated bioengineers and scientists to find sustainable methods of agriculture.

Over the last three decades, the founders of the organic farming movement raised a $50-billion organic farming industry and they are not done yet. Mesko claimed that the industry is growing with a rapid rate of 8% a year while conventional farming is growing less than 1% a year that it’s not even enough to keep up with the growth in US population.

A paper written by Anna Gallart back in 2017 traced back the history of organic farming to conventional farming. During World War II, the US Army used DDT to battle a typhus epidemic. The discovery of the DDT was a product of the industrial revolution. By the Second World War, people realized that it can be used as an effective insecticide in agricultural farms. It is also a cheap way to increase food productivity.

But in the 1950s, several studies were made into the use of DDT in agricultural areas. The wildlife, particularly some population of the birds, were severely affected by the presence of DDT. The high concentration of DDT in the birds’ bodies affected their reproduction system. Since those studies came out, people slowly realized that DDT could have a severe impact on human and animal health. This led to DDT becoming a prohibited chemical in 1970.

Organic farming has been around since the 1920s but it wasn’t until the late 70s that it made its mark in the agriculture industry. This method uses natural sources of nutrients and eliminates the use of synthetic chemicals in the food that we eat. Studies also showed that organic products are not just better than conventionally-grown foods, they are more valuable to human health.

According to studies, organic crops have more Vitamin C, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, and fewer nitrates than conventional crops. Organic products are also considered to be high-quality crops with more anti-oxidant micronutrients.

Aside from the demand for organic food, there is also a moral satisfaction in raising organic products. It supports environmental conservation, reduces pollution, and protects water and soil. Although the transition to organic from conventional can take two to three years, there are many organizations and associations that will support a farmer’s endeavor to produce healthier crops.

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