In other words if you were a farmer will you follow the practices of organic farming or inorganic farming and why?
The current habit of advocating for organic farming began, I assume, as a way to avoid the hazards of all the chemicals in fertilizers and pest-control products. Good idea.
But from what I've heard lately, there's just as much danger with inefficient control over organic crops. I saw recently on the News that 4 people have died from eating contaminated mushmelons. And a year or so back, there was contaminated spinach. And the list seems to get longer and longer. Organic, it seems, means natural fertilizer (manure) which is more likely to contain e-coli bacteria, etc...
And while not all "organic" food bans all chemical application, I think there's too much pressure to grow totally organic food, putting the farmer in a pickle, so-to-speak.
I would say....if a farmer wants to grow organic veggies for his own family's personal use, let him. But for commercial sale, I think they need to follow inorganic methods that have been tried and found to be effective for a long period of time.
No matter how effective methods of inorganic farming are, wont they be harmful to the environment?
once the chemicals in the soil are leeched out due to rains and drained into lakes eutrophication occurs and entire ecosystem's are wiped out. And if the chemicals are drained into your water supply isn't there a higher chance of you getting sick compared to organic farming? From what i have heard inorganic farming has more disadvantages than advantages and organic farming has a lot of advantages compared to disadvantages so wouldn't organic farming be a safer bet?
All of my decisions would be business driven. Some organic techniques are actually more profitable than their alternatives. Managing the land and keeping productivity high are most important. The job of the farmer is to be as productive as possible. The farmer is the only line between plenty and privation.
We are livestock farmers and we consider our job to be to produce the best quality product without harming the environment or people. We are not 100% organic, but very close. Some of our practices would be considered "less profitable" in strictly financial terms, but it is important to us that our animals are healthy and humanely raised. We can do that and still make money.
So you can make money at it, that is profitable. The amount of profit one wants to make varies. There are hobby farmers whose profit is break even and still others that chose a higher profit margin. Luckily, it is still up to the individual farmer how profitable they choose to be.
if we look at it from an economical point of view organic farming is cheaper compared to inorganic farming for a long term farming and since the motive of business is to maximize profit, shouldn't farmers opt for organic farming as it's beneficial to them?
Organic farming takes a lot more man labor. It's a lot easier to spray the plants with insecticides and get it done with. It's a labor of love, persisntence, and patience. It also takes a lot of experience in order to succeed at it, but it's a beautiful thing.
Productivity is also vital. Yield per acre is important. Organic farming has benefits. A hybrid style farming would probably be the most productive, most profitable and most conservative for the land. No method should be excluded with out good reasons. Those reasons can be personal.
I can understand why non-organic methods are used for commercial farming, it is about maximising the size of the crop for the area of land used.
However even in non-organic farming slurry is often sprayed onto the field.
If you live in a farming area you will know when they are doing this.
So there is not such a clear cut divide between organic and non-organic growing as there might seem to be when it comes to using muck on the land.
I did write more on this but decided I might want to use that as a hub or elsewhere.
I garden 100% organically, but since it's just a nice bonus for our family and not a source of income, it doesn't really matter much if we have a bad year with one or two crops.
If I were farming commercially and depended on the income, I'd probably use Integrated Pest Management, which focuses on using organic methods of pest control but employs conventional ones when necessary. I think IPM, when implemented properly, combines the best of both worlds, and my understanding is that many farmers who practice it end up nearly 100% organic anyway, because their crops become more resistant to pests over time due to improved soil quality and an increased population of beneficial insects and other natural predators.
I don't bother to shell out extra on organic feed for our laying hens, but they have free run of our yard, so they get lots of good organic greens, bugs, and other goodies from their foraging, plus they're healthier and happier than any so-called "organic" hen crammed in a warehouse with 1000 more of her kind. The USDA's organic standards for poultry are hopelessly inadequate.
I envy you! If it weren't because I'm bound to this big city (Miami) I'd be living in the country like my grandma, raising animals and growing my own vegetables and fruits. My husband is a city man. He won't fall for it. I should say I'm lucky to have half an acre of yard in our rented house.
I'm not sure how much you could get away with in a rental, but there are lots of resources out there to help city dwellers grow more food in less space, and a lot of cities are allowing small flocks of hens again. Might be worth investigating, as a compromise.
You know... One of my neighbors who still thinks he's in Cuba brought a bunch of hens and a rooster to his backyard. The neighborhood hates him! The rooster wakes us up at 5:30am every weekend!!! LOL
If I had hens I'd have them loose, but I have a dog, there are plenty of cats in the neighborhood and lots of ducks constantly stopping traffic, or getting ran over.
I did have a vegetable garden for two years and it was all organic. It was A LOT of work, mostly because I had no clue what I was doing (I still don't) but it was a great feeling having those great tomatoes and peppers. Because I'm very allergic and have to get weekly shots in order to breathe, I had to give it up for something less time consuming. I now have a beautiful butterfly garden in my backyard. I have a lot of local plants and get a lot of butterflies, TONS OF LIZARDS OF ALL COLORS THAT JUMP ON ME THE MINUTE I WALK OUTSIDE , and I also have a huge variety of birds, including the hummingbirds. The only thing I still grow is a few herbs: Oregano, Thyme, Rosemary, Parsley, Basil, and Mint. I also have a green thumb for zinnias in South Florida which seems to throw everybody off because they are not easily grown here.
I'd love to read your hubs on IPM. Do you have any?
I like the idea of eating everything organic, but you know, when you look at the price difference in the supermarket shelves between organically produced veggies, and normal veggies, they are too expensive.
Not only that, they look terrible!
One thing that non-organic farmers have strived for over the years is to have a final product that looks attractive.
The buyers wanted it, the consumers wanted it, and now we have perfect tomatoes or lettuce or leeks or whatever you wanted to buy, with no signs of insect bore holes or whatever.
Taste fell out of fashion at the same time, but those of use who grew our own knew the difference.
Difference was, when I grew my own, I still used pesticides, but they still tasted better.
Then the organic brigade came along and told us how we were poisoning our bodies with pesticides or fertilizers or whatever.
So the organic market grew.
It took me a few years to realise that even if you do everything by the book, companion planting etc, you will still get ugly vegetables that you are frightened to strip down under the kitchen tap to wash because God knows what beastie is still lurking there!
Last time I grew my own, it cost me a fortune in water and most of it ended up as compost.
I'm not a farmer obviously, but I think the whole thing is a big con.
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