Sustainable Agriculture And Organic Farming

Sustainable Agriculture And Organic Farming

Organic Farming vs. Conventional Methods

The practice of organic farming is definitely much better and more humane for the environment. Mainly because organic farming does not use any pesticides, insecticides and even synthetic fertilizers, you are sure that the products coming produced by it are 100 per cent natural, organic and safe.

And with the onset of sustainable agriculture along with its message of making agricultural lands much more sustained and productive, so is the issue of organic farming has been given much attention. Basically, organic farming can be considered a stem of sustainable agriculture wherein the farmer uses organic materials and biologically natural methods in farming.

However, with organic farming, farmers make sure that their land receives the sufficient nutritional supplement and also the natural way of tending to it. Clearly, it honours that organic farming is much safer for the natural environment and obviously, to people, since the materials and ingredients being used are organic and purely natural.

Organic Foods And Conventional Products: On Safety measure

Its safeness for the body is also complemented with its nutritional value. Since organic food is produced from all natural methods and farming, it is thus obvious that it is much more nutritious. The products are proven much fresher and known to have undergone only little processes; hence, you can be assured that indeed, organic food is nutritious and safe to consume.

The concern then may emerge with the competition between organic produce and conventional products. It is true that organic food may cost a bit more than conventional products, however, there is no proof to recommend that organic food does taste better than conventional ones. It has only been proven that organic food is much safer to the body, and not necessarily finer tasting than the rest of the products.

Sustainability of Organic Farming

In the end, the true difficulty remains whether the practice of organic farming and sustainable agriculture can be depended on especially in the issue of food shortage all over the planet. Perhaps, further research study must still be applied to finally conclude if organic farming can possibly be a viable source of food in the future.

On the other hand, since the conventional methods take advantage of pesticides and other chemical substance which accelerate the process of growth in the plants; without a doubt, it would result to a much higher yield in the future. However, with the natural means of organic farming, it only entails the farmer to go on the natural process of farming which is most likely the reason why organic foods are a lot more expensive than conventional crops and products.

And with the onset of sustainable agriculture along with its message of making agricultural lands much more sustained and productive, so is the issue of organic farming has been given much attention. Basically, organic farming can be considered a branch of sustainable agriculture wherein the farmer uses organic materials and biologically natural techniques in farming. Mostly since organic farming does not use any type of pesticides, insecticides and even synthetic fertilizers, you are sure that the products getting produced by it are 100 per cent natural, safe and organic. It is true that organic food may cost a bit more than conventional products, however, there is no evidence to suggest that organic food performs taste better than conventional ones. Since organic food is made from all natural methods and farming, it is thus apparent that it is much more nutritious.

The question still remains of how sustainable the method of organic farming will be. Since organic farming requires more attempt and a lot more time to be able to yield raw materials, it is then unquestionable that it yields lesser products than conventional methods.

What are the methods of organic farming?

Methods of organic farming, organic and yourhealth

Organic farming methods/techniques

From https://www.ccof.org/documents/nop-standards-manual

THIS INFORMATION HAS BEEN OBTAINED THROUGH https://www.ccof.org/documents/nop-standards-manual  FOR THE PURPOSE OF SHARING IDEAS ABOUT ORGANIC FARMING METHODS TO OUR VISITORS. ALL DUE CARE SHOULD BE TAKEN TO DETERMINE IF IT IS SUITABLE FOR YOUR SITUATION.

Methods of organic farming step by step from Land requirements to harvesting:

Organic Farming Methods, techniques

205.202 Land requirements:

Any field or farm parcel from which harvested crops are intended to be sold, labeled, or represented as “organic,” must:

  • Have been managed in accordance with the provisions of Soil fertility and crop nutrient management practice standard §§ 205.203 through 205.206; Crop pest, weed, and disease management practice standard.
  • Have had no prohibited substances, as listed in § 205.105, “allowed and prohibited substances, methods, and ingredients in organic production and handling” applied to it for a period of 3 years immediately preceding harvest of the crop.
  • Have distinct, defined boundaries and buffer zones such as runoff diversions to prevent the unintended application of a prohibited substance to the crop or contact with a prohibited substance applied to adjoining land that is not under organic management.

 Organic Farming methods and technique

205.203 Soil fertility and crop nutrient management practice standard in organic farming methods.

  • The producer must select and implement tillage and cultivation practices that maintain or improve the physical, chemical, and biological condition of soil and minimize soil erosion.
  • The producer must manage crop nutrients and soil fertility through rotations, cover crops, and the application of plant and animal materials.
  • The producer must manage plant and animal materials to maintain or improve soil organic matter content in a manner that does not contribute to contamination of crops, soil, or water by plant nutrients, pathogenic organisms, heavy metals, or residues of prohibited substances. Animal and plant materials include:
    1. Raw animal manure, which must be composted unless it is:
      • Applied to land used for a crop not intended for human consumption;
      • Incorporated into the soil not less than 120 days prior to the harvest of a product whose edible portion has direct contact with the soil surface or soil particles;
      • Incorporated into the soil not less than 90 days prior to the harvest of a product whose edible portion does not have direct contact with the soil surface or soil particles;
    2. Composted plant and animal materials produced through a process that:
      • Established an initial C:N ratio of between 25:1 and 40:1; and
      • Maintained a temperature of between 131 F and 170 F for 3 days using an in-vessel or static aerated pile system; or
      • Maintained a temperature of between 131F and 170F for 15 days using a windrow composting system, during which period, the materials must be turned a minimum of five times.
    3. Uncomposted plant materials.
  • A producer may manage crop nutrients and soil fertility to maintain or improve soil organic matter content in a manner that does not contribute to contamination of crops, soil, or water by plant nutrients, pathogenic organisms, heavy metals, or residues of prohibited substances by applying:
    1. A crop nutrient or soil amendment included on the National List of synthetic substances allowed for use in organic crop production;
    2. A mined substance of low solubility;
    3. A mined substance of high solubility, Provided, That, the substance is used in compliance with the conditions established on the National List of nonsynthetic materials prohibited for crop production;
    4. Ash obtained from the burning of a plant or animal material, except as prohibited in paragraph (e) of this section: Provided, That, the material burned has not been treated or combined with a prohibited substance or the ash is not included on the National List of nonsynthetic substances prohibited for use in organic crop production; and
    5.  A plant or animal material that has been chemically altered by a manufacturing process: Provided, That, the material is included on the National List of synthetic substances allowed for use in organic crop production established in § 205.601Synthetic substances allowed for use in organic”.
  • The producer must not use:
    1. Any fertilizer or composted plant and animal material that contains a synthetic substance not included on the National List of synthetic substances allowed for use in organic crop production;
    2. Sewage sludge (biosolids) as defined in 40 CFR Part 503; and
    3. Burning as a means of disposal for crop residues produced on the operation: Except, That, burning may be used to suppress the spread of disease or to stimulate seed germination.

 Techniques, Organic Farming Methods

205.204 Seeds and planting stock practice standard.

  • The producer must use organically grown seeds, annual seedlings, and planting stock: Except, That,
    1. Nonorganically produced, untreated seeds and planting stock may be used to produce an organic crop when an equivalent organically produced variety is not commercially available, Except, That, organically produced seed must be used for the production of edible sprouts;
    2. Nonorganically produced seeds and planting stock that have been treated with a substance included on the National List of synthetic substances allowed for use in organic crop production may be used to produce an organic crop when an equivalent organically produced or untreated variety is not commercially available;
    3. Nonorganically produced annual seedlings may be used to produce an organic crop when a temporary variance has been granted in accordance with § 205.290(a)(2) “temporary variances, Damage caused by drought, wind, flood, excessive moisture, hail, tornado, earthquake, fire, or other”
    4. Nonorganically produced planting stock to be used to produce a perennial crop may be sold, labeled, or represented as organically produced only after the planting stock has been maintained under a system of organic management for a period of no less than 1 year; and
    5. Seeds, annual seedlings, and planting stock treated with prohibited substances may be used to produce an organic crop when the application of the materials is a requirement of Federal or State phytosanitary regulations.

205.205 Crop rotation practice standard in organic farming techniques

The producer must implement a crop rotation including but not limited to sod, cover crops, green manure crops, and catch crops that provide the following functions that are applicable to the operation:

  • Maintain or improve soil organic matter content;
  • Provide for pest management in annual and perennial crops;
  • Manage deficient or excess plant nutrients; and
  • Provide erosion control.

 Organic Farming methods/techniques

205.206 Crop pest, weed, and disease management practice standard in organic farming techniques

  • The producer must use management practices to prevent crop pests, weeds, and diseases including but not limited to:
    1. Crop rotation and soil and crop nutrient management practices, as provided for in §§ 205.203 and 205.205;
    2. Sanitation measures to remove disease vectors, weed seeds, and habitat for pest organisms; and
    3. Cultural practices that enhance crop health, including the selection of plant species and varieties with regard to suitability to site-specific conditions and resistance to prevalent pests, weeds, and diseases.
  • Pest problems may be controlled through mechanical or physical methods including but not limited to:
    1. Augmentation or introduction of predators or parasites of the pest species;
    2. Development of habitat for natural enemies of pests;
    3. Nonsynthetic controls such as lures, traps, and repellents.
  • Weed problems may be controlled through:
    1. Mulching with fully biodegradable materials;
    2. Mowing;
    3. Livestock grazing;
    4. Hand weeding and mechanical cultivation;
    5. Flame, heat, or electrical means; or
    6. Plastic or other synthetic mulches: Provided, That, they are removed from the field at the end of the growing or harvest season.
  • Disease problems may be controlled through:
    1. Management practices which suppress the spread of disease organisms; or
    2. Application of nonsynthetic biological, botanical, or mineral inputs.
    3. When the practices provided for in paragraphs (a) through (d) of this section are insufficient to prevent or control crop pests, weeds, and diseases, a biological or botanical substance or a substance included on the National List of synthetic substances allowed for use in organic crop production may be applied to prevent, suppress, or control pests, weeds, or diseases: Provided, That, the conditions for using the substance are documented in the organic system plan.
  • The producer must not use lumber treated with arsenate or other prohibited materials for new installations or replacement purposes in contact with soil or livestock.

Organic Farming methods/techniques

205.207 Wild-crop harvesting practice standard.

  • A wild crop that is intended to be sold, labeled, or represented as organic must be harvested from a designated area that has had no prohibited substance, as set forth in § 205.105, applied to it for a period of 3 years immediately preceding the harvest of the wild crop.
  •  A wild crop must be harvested in a manner that ensures that such harvesting or gathering will not be destructive to the environment and will sustain the growth and production of the wild crop.

for finding more information about organic farming methods and technique,  please contact the related authorities of your country this information obtained from NOP  website and it may change from time to time please for finding the latest version visit this website:

https://www.ccof.org/documents/nop-standards-manual

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