Going organic has become a trend in recent years and organic food is now widely available in supermarkets. Good health depends to a large extend on the food we consume and therefore it is good to know where the produce comes from. Organic farming is an agricultural system that seeks to provide the consumer, with fresh, tasty and authentic food while respecting natural life-cycle systems. Organic farming practices are executed in a sustainable way to ensure the least possible impact on the environment and farmers are required to follow strict regulations, such as, wide crop rotation, limited use of chemical synthetic pesticides and synthetic fertilizer, livestock antibiotics, food additives and processing aids. Moreover, it is absolutely prohibited to use genetically modified organisms. Furthermore, livestock is raised in free-range open-air systems. Consuming organic food is essentially giving us peace of mind as it is produced according to strict rules and controls aimed at respecting the environment and animals.
Benefits of Organic Food Consumption
Several studies have been conducted to investigate the benefits of organic food consumption. All of them outline that organic fruits, vegetables and grains are more nutrient dense and have measurable benefits over conventional crops. A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition revealed that organic produce has 18 - 69% higher concentrations of antioxidants. In 2007 a study conducted by the University of Newcastle, UK reported that organic produce boasted up to 40 percent higher levels of vitamin C, zinc and iron than its conventional counterparts. Since the use of chemical pesticides is prohibited in organic farming the plants produce their own protective compounds, called antioxidants, to fight damage or disease and therefore the nutritional value increases also for us.
Many chemicals used in conventional food production to eliminate weed, mold or insects are linked to causing cancer and other serious diseases. Additionally, the use of antibiotics in animal food products may cause people to become resistant to fighting disease over time. A few days ago it was reported that a woman was diagnosed with a superbug and the treatment with a variety of antibiotics was ineffective due to resistance. This is an alarming development and shows that antibiotics may fail sooner or later without alternative treatment options at hand. Thus, the consumption of organic food also reduces the risks of health problems.
Some studies suggest that organic food tastes better due to the absence of pesticides. However, other studies in the EU have so far failed to find any conclusive evidence to back this up. In general, organic farmers promote the authentic taste due to the natural growth of the product rather than claiming better taste. We have our own little organic production going in our backyard, growing herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers and berries and we certainly agree that naturally grown vegetables and fruits taste better. Moreover, it is a whole lot of fun watching the plants grow and eating the fruits right off the bushes and trees or to cook delicious jams and marmalades. We will share some of our favorite recipes with you in another blog.
There are two main reasons why organic food is superior to conventional products. Organic food generally contains more nutrients and is not treated with chemical pesticides. Consuming organic food is an investment in yourself. It helps you to stay healthy, protects the environment and promotes animal welfare. These are all good reasons to pay a little extra for the longer production period organic food requires. We support our local producers of organic chocolate and are happy that we can share these delicious products with you.
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