Is growing organically just a fad or is it the future of farming? – ABC Rural (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

… used in the process, is going organic the way for farmers to win them over? Bang for buck The number one criticism of organic produce is that it is too expensive, according to Dr Ian Musgrave, senior lecturer in farm ecology at the University of Adelaide. “The major barrier to people eating fresh fruit and vegetables is cost and organics cost more,” he said. “You get more bang for your buck from buying conventional vegetables which will have more health benefits.” But …

4 ways to create a healthful summer diet – The Washington Post

By Consumer Reports | June 22, 2015 Summer’s bounty of fruit and vegetables does more than tempt your taste buds; it can have a powerful impact on your health. When you have more choices, there’s a greater chance that you’ll eat more produce, and that’s likely to lead to a lower risk of chronic conditions such as heart disease, most cancers, Type 2 diabetes and obesity. To maximize the health benefits, make these four easy changes to the way you shop for, prep and store your fruit and …

Organic farming can actually be more profitable than using fertilizers and pesticides – Quartz

By Deena Shanker | June 9, 2015 Despite the many environmental benefits of organic farming—it’s better for soil, water, air, and climate change—it’s often written off as economically unfeasible for farmers. That’s largely because the same patch of land will produce less food when farmed without the synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, and other tools used in conventional agriculture. But according to a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, organic …

India’s Independent Farmers Embrace Organic | Al Jazeera America

By Ankita Rao & Bibek Bhandari | May 31, 2015 CHAINA, India — For two decades, Mahender Singh grew his vegetables without chemicals on his 10-acre plot of land in Pipal Mangoli, a village in southeastern Punjab. Then in 1967, an official from India’s Agriculture Department arrived in the nearby city of Patiala with a bag of chemical fertilizer, and farming in Punjab changed radically. With the introduction of chemicals such as urea, phosphate and pesticides as well as new farming …

MSU organic farming study finds diverse benefits using sheep : Ag Weekly

… research, education and extension project, which is showing several environmental and economic benefits for an integrated cropping and livestock system, according to Perry Miller, MSU professor of land resources and environmental sciences who is part of the research team. Miller said that in a typical organic farming system, tillage is used to terminate cover crops and to get rid of unwanted weeds. However, frequent mechanical tilling can disrupt soil structure and reduce organic matter, …

The potential for organic food in Middle East

… MENA organic food leader board with a sector valued at $67.1m in sales in 2014 compared with $46m in 2009. The UAE follows at $18.1m versus with $11.9m in 2009 and in Egypt, the market was worth $9.5m last year, up from $5.3m in 2009. Liron Kriaf, contributing analyst for Euromonitor International, explains in Israel a range of factors have led to the growth of the market. Kriaf points to the greater awareness of the organic movement and its purported benefits, broader media coverage and …

Claims that GMOs Will “Feed the World” Don’t Hold Up | EWG

… largely address the need for more calories in the future.” The Just Label It campaign, which advocates for mandatory federal labeling of GMO foods, provided funding support for this new report. Gary Hirshberg, chairman of Just Label It, said, “Biotech companies and their customers in chemical agriculture have been attempting to sell the benefits of GMOs for two decades. Between exaggerated claims about feeding the world and a dramatic escalation in the use of toxic pesticides, it is no …

Will Going Organic Help You Lose Weight?

From U.S. News & World Report, Posted 17 March 2015 If you’ve ever picked up an apple from the organic section of your supermarket, you probably thought that by doing so, you were improving your health. And if you haven’t, you may belong to the camp that believes the potential health benefits of going organic don’t outweigh the literal costs. But what if the benefits included weight loss? Here, we explore how eating organic may affect your slim-down efforts. Whether or not you choose …

Certified Naturally Grown: A New Way to Identify Pesticide-Free, Non-GMO Food » EcoWatch

… synthetic chemicals or GMOs. “Certified Naturally Grown is like the USDA’s National Organic Program in that our certified producers must follow similar standards, farm without the use of synthetic chemical inputs or GMOs, and farm to support biological diversity and ecological balance,” Alice Varon, CNG executive director, told Mother Earth News. Some benefits of the CNG certification include the facts that it costs less and takes less time to get compared to the USDA’s certified organic …

FDA Approves Some Genetically Modified Apples and Potatoes – WSJ

… from the existing roster of genetically modified crops in that they provide benefits to consumers. Other modified crops, like corn and soybeans, are made to withstand certain pesticides, making them easier for farmers to grow. The FDA said Friday that it didn’t think the Arctic apple or the Innate potato posed a risk to human health, concluding that “these foods are as safe and nutritious as their conventional counterparts.” The FDA is still deciding whether to require labels on the apple …