According to the International Competence Centre for Organic Agriculture (ICCOA) in Bangalore, more consumers are turning towards food grown organicall, with growing awareness of nature and number of dangerous chemicals being used in modern agriculture.
Recent studies in the US and Britain have found that the nutritional levels in organic produce are much higher. One actually gets the benefits ascribed to a certain fruit, vegetable or grain.
A study conducted at the University of California found the amount of the flavonoids quercetin and kaempferol was respectively 79 percent and 97 percent higher in organic tomatoes. Flavonoids reduce haemorrhoids, aid blood circulation, lower cholesterol, prevent and treat cataracts and even combat cancer.
Research at Britain’s Newcastle University found the levels of antioxidants in milk from cattle raised on organic feed to be 50-80 percent higher than in milk from other cattle.
Here are a few of the reasons to go for organic food:
• Safer – for all living things;
• Healthier due to higher nutritive value and no bad effects from pesticides;
• Pro-environment as it replenishes soil, creates less pollution (from production as well as the use of chemical fertiliser and pesticides) and maintains the ecological balance.
There are three kinds of organic food :
• Traditionally organic – farms that follow traditional agricultural practices and have never used chemical pesticides or fertiliser. These include small farms whose owners are organic farmers by default, as they cannot afford synthetic fertiliser or pesticides.
• In-convergence organic – farms that have recently switched to organic farming and are in the process of acquiring certification; they are under the purview of certifying agencies.
• Certified organic – farms that are certified organic by agencies such as SGS, Skal, Ecocert or Indocert; certification is fairly new in India, and has developed with an eye to exports. However, with greater awareness, even the Indian consumer is seeking certified organic products.