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Food Quality and your Health

Antibiotic use is cut in organic farming

Antibiotics are used in non-organic farming for growth promotion and disease prevention in overcrowded, intensively reared farm animals. However, because organic farming methods have high standards of animal welfare this minimises the need for antibiotics and other drugs. Some veterinary drugs and antibiotics are occasionally used in organic farms but only when strictly necessary and all other options have been exhausted.

A quote from The House of Lords states that, "There is a continuing threat to human health from imprudent use of antibiotics in animals" - House of Lords select committee.

GMO's banned in organic farming

Genetically modified organisms (GMO's) have been tested, however there is still insufficient evidence to suggest that they are safe, and some animal feeding trials have resulted revealed unexpected toxicities.

BSE - organically reared or born cattle are BSE free

Organic farming banned the feeding of animal proteins to farm animals well before the BSE crisis hit the UK. This was down to common sense and the precautionary principle. There has been no recorded cases of BSE in any organically born and reared animal found by the Soil Association.

Food poisoning risks are minimised by using organic standards and methods

The risk of food poisoning such as E.coli o157 is minimised because of methods such as the careful composting of manure. A recent government survey has given organic food a clean bill of health and confirmed many expectations about the reduction in risk of food poisoning.

I have answered a few questions about the use of drugs, pesticides, GMO's, etc in non-organic food, but not the question, how organic food produces healthier food.

Organic farming nurtures the soil

Healthy plants, animals and people depend on healthy soil. There are millions of micro-organisms in one gram of soil, so small they can not be seen by the naked eye. Some of these micro-organisms are known to work with plants to help provide more nutrients. Research has shown that organically managed soil that receives compost and manure can have up to 85% more healthy soil life that the soil bombarded with chemical pesticides and fertilisers.

Organic farming returns nutrients to the soil

Plants remove up to 60 minerals from the soil. Non-organic farmers only replace the nutrients in the soil that are needed for plant growth such as, nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK). This can result in a depletion of all other minerals. Organic farmers use a wide variety of manures and composts which contain a wide range of minerals and not just NPK, this makes deficiencies less likely to happen.

Organic farming rotates crops

Crop rotation has been used for many many years, this is because if you grow he same crop in the same soil it can lead to a depletion of nutrients, the nutrients that this particular crop uses will become very scarce in the soil. This is why organic farmers use crop rotation and include 'green manures' in the rotation. Crops that fix nitrogen from the air into the soil, allow the soil to rest, and at the end of the season are ploughed back in. If the soil is rich in minerals the crops will be healthy.

Some of the text above is from an article on the Soil Associations website - Click Here to see their site



Organic Farming Pages - Topics & Content

Organic Farms Page 1

For and Against Organic Farming - advantages and disadvantages


Organic Farms Page 2:

Animal Welfare

Chickens - Organic Farms v Intensive Farms

Eggs - Organic Farms v Intensive Farms


Organic Farms Page 3:

Pigs - Organic Farms v Intensive Farms

Homeopathy used in Organic Farms

Arguements Against Organic farms

Organic Lettuce - E. Coli Debate


Organic Farms Page 4:

Antibiotics used in Intensive Farms

Regulatory Muddle

The sources of Contamination

Which eggs are affected?



Organic Farms Page 5:

Antibiotic Residues and our Health


Organic Farms Page 6:

Key Recommendations - Bans and Restrictions:

Key Recommendations - The Veterinary Profession


Organic Farms Page 7:

Food Quality and your Health

Antibiotic use is cut in organic farming

GMO's banned in organic farming

BSE - organically reared or born cattle are BSE free

Food poisoning risks are minimised by using organic standards and methods

Organic farming nurtures the soil

Organic farming returns nutrients to the soil

Organic farming rotates crops




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