Navigation Links
Organic Farming Can Feed the World

Organic farming can yield up to three times as much food as conventional farming on the same amount of land---according to new findings which refute the long-standing assumption that organic farming methods cannot produce enough food to feed the global population.

Researchers from the University of Michigan found that in developed countries, yields were almost equal on organic and conventional farms. In developing countries, food production could double or triple using organic methods, said Ivette Perfecto, professor at U-M's School of Natural Resources and Environment, and one the study's principal investigators. Catherine Badgley, research scientist in the Museum of Paleontology, is a co-author of the paper along with several current and former graduate and undergraduate students from U-M.

"My hope is that we can finally put a nail in the coffin of the idea that you can't produce enough food through organic agriculture," Perfecto said.

In addition to equal or greater yields, the authors found that those yields could be accomplished using existing quantities of organic fertilizers, and without putting more farmland into production.

The idea to undertake an exhaustive review of existing data about yields and nitrogen availability was fueled in a roundabout way, when Perfecto and Badgley were teaching a class about the global food system and visiting farms in Southern Michigan.

"We were struck by how much food the organic farmers would produce," Perfecto said. The researchers set about compiling data from published literature to investigate the two chief objections to organic farming: low yields and lack of organically acceptable nitrogen sources.

Their findings refute those key arguments, Perfecto said, and confirm that organic farming is less environmentally harmful yet can potentially produce more than enough food. This is especially good news for developing countries, where it 's sometimes impossible to deliver food from outside, so farmers must supply their own. Yields in developing countries could increase dramatically by switching to organic farming, Perfecto said.

While that seems counterintuitive, it makes sense because in developing countries, many farmers still do not have the access to the expensive fertilizers and pesticides that farmers use in developed countries to produce those high yields, she said.

After comparing yields of organic and convention farms, the researchers looked at nitrogen availability. To do so, they multiplied the current farm land area by the average amount of nitrogen available for production crops if so-called "green manures" were planted between growing seasons. Green manures are cover crops which are ploughed into the soil to provide natural soil amendments instead of synthetic fertilizers. They found that planting green manures between growing seasons provided enough nitrogen to farm organically without synthetic fertilizers.

Organic farming is important because conventional agriculture---which involves high-yielding plants, mechanized tillage, synthetic fertilizers and biocides---is so detrimental to the environment, Perfecto said. For instance, fertilizer runoff from conventional agriculture is the chief culprit in creating dead zones---low oxygen areas where marine life cannot survive. Proponents of organic farming argue that conventional farming also causes soil erosion, greenhouse gas emission, increased pest resistance and loss of biodiversity.

For their analysis, researchers defined the term organic as: practices referred to as sustainable or ecological; that utilize non-synthetic nutrient cycling processes; that exclude or rarely use synthetic pesticides; and sustain or regenerate the soil quality.

Perfecto said the idea that people would go hungry if farming went organic is "ridiculous."

"Corporate interes t in agriculture and the way agriculture research has been conducted in land grant institutions, with a lot of influence by the chemical companies and pesticide companies as well as fertilizer companies---all have been playing an important role in convincing the public that you need to have these inputs to produce food," she said.


'"/>




Related medicine news :

1. Reconsider Health Benefits of Organic Baby Foods, advices new study
2. Organic food loses its whole-grain image
3. Himachal Pradesh: Horse Dung To Be Converted Into Organic Fertilizer
4. Exiled Tibetans In India To Adopt Organic Farming
5. Organic Farming May Increase The Output Of Apples In Himachal
6. America’s Demand For Organic Foods Far Exceeds the Suppl
7. More Health Benefits from Organic milk
8. No Health Benefits from Organic Milk Compared to Conventional Milk
9. Organic Pastures’ Raw Milk in a Sou
10. Hospital serves Healthy Organic Food to patients...
11. Organic Food Fever Catches Up In Delhi
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/25/2016)... ... 25, 2016 , ... Today American University of Antigua (AUA) ... announced the AUA-FIU Global MD Program. Students in the Global MD Program ... a Certificate of Completion from the FIU Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine Clinical ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... ... Today Omega Institute, a leading destination for yoga education in New York’s Hudson ... the growing field of yoga therapy . Yoga therapy adapts the practice of ... injuries, illnesses, and temporary or chronic health conditions. , “Yoga therapy is a complementary ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... May 25, 2016 , ... The Global Wellness Summit (GWS) today announced ... wellness offerings of Europe, a continent that pioneered the medical/wellness concept for the world. ... pioneers in medical wellness, including Henri Chenot, Founder of the Chenot Group, which operates ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... May 25, 2016 , ... Conrad Siegel Actuaries, delivering comprehensive ... Prescription Drug survey , an employee benefits survey measuring how Central ... December 2015, indicates that employers are turning to consumer directed health care and ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... May 25, 2016 , ... Laser Skin & ... turn back the hands of time of female aging. The Juliet™ ... Women with symptoms such as leakage, laxity, itchiness and pain have reported real relief ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/23/2016)... 2016 Diplomat Pharmacy, Inc. (NYSE: DPLO) announced today ... programs. The hands-on learning experience is a 12-week summer ... Fellowship and Internship programs bring ... and interns are provided optional housing free of charge ... at the Riverfront Residence Hall to foster communication and ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... May 23, 2016 According ... Share, Development, Growth and Demand Forecast to 2022 ... Other), by Application (Drug Discovery and Development, Proteomics, ... (Pharmaceuticals, Life Science and Biotechnology, Academic and Research ... Research, the global mass spectrometry market ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... WASHINGTON , May 23, 2016 The World ... PrePex device to include adolescents aged 13 years, ... MedTech, can be offered for adult and adolescent males in ... Africa . PrePex was the first male circumcision device ... Circ MedTech,s CEO, Eddy Horowitz said: " The ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: