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How do organic pesticides compare to conventional pesticides?

January 31st, 2019 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

Many consumers choose to buy higher-priced organic produce because they believe organic foods are not grown using pesticides and therefore are healthier for humans and for the environment. However, organic farming can include any pesticides derived from natural sources. This distinction does not mean organic pesticides are necessarily less toxic than …

Can we ditch intensive farming – and still feed the world?

January 30th, 2019 / The Guardian, UK

Our reliance on artificial fertiliser and intensive farming techniques did not happen overnight, but took decades. Along the way, these methods revolutionised farming and enabled huge population growth and economic growth. We now have a wealth of scientific evidence that shows that continuing down the same path would risk runaway …

GM crops create “halo effect” that benefits organic farmers, says new research

January 28th, 2019 / Alliance for Science, US

Mark Lynas writes:

Growing genetically modified insect-resistant corn in the United States has dramatically reduced insecticide use and created a “halo effect” that also benefits farmers raising non-GM and organic crops, new research shows.

This finding, published by University of Maryland researchers in the prestigious peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, effectively …

Organic or GMO Maize?

July 3rd, 2018 / Global Press Journal

The bill under review by Uganda’s Parliament would require farmers to leave 200 meters (656 feet) between organic and GMO maize crops, in order to prevent cross-pollination. The problem is that perhaps three-quarters of the nation’s farmers would have to choose one or the other, because they don’t have enough …

Why not genetically engineered organic foods?

June 6th, 2018 / Washington Examiner, US

USDA’s arbitrary rules about what is permitted for the “organic” designation prohibit important advances in agriculture and food production, and they unnecessarily restrict consumer choice. That could be remedied by expanding what is permitted under the federal National Organic Standards, and this would be an opportune time.
The Organic Foods Production …

Nigerian entrepreneur: ‘We’re farming in a shipping container’

February 5th, 2018 / BBC, UK

Video: Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja got around the costs of transporting farm produce from the countryside to the city, by trying organic container farming.
She moved her farm into Nigeria’s capital Abuja – cutting fuel costs and reducing the amount of produce ruined on the way to market. Read more …

Why do consumers prefer organic to conventional produce when both use pesticides?

August 11th, 2017 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

What gets overlooked by [activist] groups are the reports from the USDA itself that show that even organic foods have pesticide residues on them — some are synthetic pesticides and some, like Spinosad, are ones approved for organic uses. Feel comfortable, though, because that same USDA data showed safe levels …

Organic agriculturists battle to take care of demand from global market

May 1st, 2017 / mchomvu.com

Alex Mchomvu, Tanzania B4FA Fellow, reports: Lydia Jacob develops her vegetables naturally in Mwanamseka, a town in the Coast Region, around 100 kilometers west of Dar es Salaam. The atmosphere here is wet and the land is loamy soil with a decent measure of natural matter.
Mrs. Jacob is a …

Will organic community embrace gene editing if it restores ancient crops?

April 17th, 2017 / Genetic Literacy Project, US

The majority of plants used in organic farming were conventionally bred to select for traits that increased productivity and are not suited for organic farming where pesticide, herbicide and fertilizer usage is limited. Significant inbreeding during the selection process has led to loss of several beneficial traits such as salt …

GMO and organic – can they work together?

March 3rd, 2017 / The Grower, US

Could they learn to work together? A growing population—and a changing climate—may demand it. Conventional agriculture has a history of depleting the soil and polluting waterways with contaminated runoff. But there is a growing recognition that such practices are not sustainable—short term yields may be higher with conventional methods, but …