Monday, September 2, 2013

Organic versus Conventional Farming

Here are some points for comparison that shows the big difference between organic meat and conventional farm meat produce:
Organic farming
The animals are given freedom and access outside and are given clean housing to minimize disease. Chickens and other animals spend most of their times outdoors to graze freely. These animals get access to fresh air as they spend minimal time confined indoors.

Organic farming is better for the environment. Its farming practices reduce pollution (air, water, soil), conserve water, reduce soil erosion, increase soil fertility, and use less energy.

Organic farms refrain from using anything laden with chemicals thus the animals grow healthier. Using natural materials to promote crop growth makes it healthier and safer for people to consume organic product. In addition, organic farming is better for birds and small animals as chemical pesticides can make it harder for creatures to reproduce and even so, kill them. Farming without pesticides is also better for the people who harvest our food.  

Conventional farming
Animals are given antibiotics, growth hormones and medications to prevent diseases and to spur growth. Traditional farms employ a variety of pesticides and other chemicals to encourage the growth of their crops. And as the animals feed on these kinds of foods, eating their meat makes human vulnerable to dangers that chemicals may bring on.

The health risk associated with exposure to pesticide is of course one of major concern when looking at the differences between organic and conventional foods. Many of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-approved pesticides were registered before researches linked them to cancer and other harmful diseases.

A significant level of toxic residues coming from these chemicals are found on conventionally grown fruit and vegetables. Sad to say, this situation is alarming since 60% of herbicides, 90% of fungicides and 30% of insecticides are carcinogenic according to EPA.

It is understandable that poultry farmers may want to produce as much meat as possible with minimal cost. But this goal makes traditional farming treat animals in an inhumane ways.

Traditional factory farms usually treat their animals as commodities. The animals are kept in tight and confined pens and cages. They cram the animals into barns and crates. Animals have limited access outdoors.

By choosing organic meats, we in turn lower the demand for those raised in traditional farming. Without market demand for such meat, there would be less number of animals cramping in substandard cages. When buying in the groceries, look out for labels like “free-range” or “ranch-raised”. Those are your clues that the animals were raised in a more humane way.

While Organic farming produces less waste, Conventional farming produces so much manure that the excess often contaminates the earth.

As industrial farms commercially raise so many animals, this equates to a lot of manure. A buildup of waste is harmful to the environment. And since majority of the animals in industrial or conventional farms receive various chemicals, and synthetic growth supplements, their droppings contain harmful toxins.

The overflow of manure in the soil can infect water wells with E. coli and other dangerous toxins, making such water sources unfit for drinking. Meanwhile, animals in organic farming receive all-natural foods and supplements so their manure are pure and free from any chemicals and toxins. Organic farms raise less livestock so they produce just enough manure to fertilize and rejuvenate the soil.

In choosing organic meat, we are going for a healthier body and supporting healthier options that benefit the environment as well.

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