Why should I pay more for organic?
Updated: Aug 9, 2018
Good question really! So I looked into it a wee bit more.
The crazy thing is before the 1950s, there wasn't a choice between organic and non-organic and nothing needed to be labelled because everything was just organically grown anyway! Nowadays, foods that have loads of chemicals sprayed onto them are the norm and guess what, they don't have to tell us what they put on our foods but organic farmers have to pay a huge fees to prove that they aren't using any chemicals.. it all seems very backwards. It basically protects big business' because if they don't need to tell us what's on our food but manage to keep the costs down then yep, we'll keep buying it. We've also got to remember that the companies making those pesticides and fertilisers are also doing pretty well out of our non-organic food shopping and those guys have enough money and power to keep the system going.. urgh it's all very complicated.
How bad is it to be eating foods sprayed with pesticides?
Well unfortunately it actually seems pretty bad. Pesticides are poisons designed to kill things and our non-organic fruit and veg are covered in the stuff.
Right here in the UK, farmers have access to hundreds of chemicals, many of which have been shown to lead to cancers, developmental problems and birth defects.. this is all pretty scary when you think that our government seems to be quite alright with this.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer (part of the World Health Organisation) have said that Glychosphate (the main ingredient for the much used herbicide Roundup which is owned by agricultural company Monsanto) is 'probably carcinogenic to humans'.
So...basically our fruits and vegetables that we buy in the supermarkets are covered in stuff that has been proven to cause cancer? Yeah, it seems that when you start looking into this stuff, that's exactly what's happening and it seems ridiculous because most of us think we are just making a healthy choice when we choose to buy fruit and veg.
So why does it cost more to buy organic?
Well without the use of chemicals, farming is a lot more labour intensive. Organic farms are usually smaller and their machinery minimal. They will usually produce a range of crops rather than only one or two, which again, means a lot more work and less land means less government subsidies.
So what are we supposed to do?
The best answer is to buy from your local farms and producers, where you can speak to the people that grow and source your food and know that the food you are eating won't poison you!
What about the extra cost?
This can be a tricky one, especially when conventional fruit and veg is able to be sold at much lower prices. I guess it's about thinking about what our priorities are and if it's trying to keep healthy and not ingesting all those chemicals that can cause so much damage then it seems like it's definitely worth it. Nowadays we spend so much money on takeaways and ready meals (which by the way, cost a fortune nowadays!) that if we just invested that money into buying better quality foods then you know, I think we'd be much better off, financially and health wise.