By now everyone has probably heard about the e-coli outbreak in Germany and that it’s the deadliest in history. It was dismaying to learn that the guilty supplier of fresh sprouts was an organic facility. And sure enough, the AP article quoted a neighbor living near the farm expressing his new fear, “No more organic food for me for now.”
Details of how the lethal bacteria found their way into the farm are still circumspect, and it is shocking at how virulent that particular strain is. We hope, however, that the media does not foment the fear expressed by the German neighbor of the organic farm and that agribusiness does not distort this terrible event to support their own deadly (but quiet, legal, under the radar) agenda. But it’s already easy to imagine the “news” stories headlining the “dangers” of organic farming. But these so-called news stories will conveniently leave out many important details such as…
- Seven of the most toxic chemical compounds know to man are approved for use as pesticides in the production of foods.
- Pesticides have been implicated in colony collapse disorder, the malady that is striking honey bees worldwide and will critically affect global food production if the problem is not solved
- Many pesticides have been linked to reproductive harm and many types of cancer
- A recent study showed that pesticides are linked to lower IQ in children
- More than 90 percent of conventionally grown produce contains pesticide residues
- Organically grown food cannot, by law, contain GMOs, which have not been proven safe to consume and require massive amounts of pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides
- Atrazine, a common chemical found in a variety of herbicides and pesticides in the US is present in at least 40% of all ground water and 75% of all streamwater located in the vicinity of commercial farms
This is just a small list of reasons to avoid food that is NOT organic. This argument is not meant to minimize the tragedy that is still unfolding in Germany, rather it’s a preemptive strike against those who will undoubtedly use the deadly e-coli outbreak to further their own agendas supportive of the vastly more deadly conventional agriculture.
Choosing organic means that you support sustainable farming methods and the preservation or restoration of the native ecology of a land. It also means avoiding a plethora of toxic compounds that accumulate in our bodies and wreak all kinds of havoc sooner or later. Although it is very sad that so many people died and were sickened in Germany by organic sprouts, this in no way implicates organic agriculture, overall, as being less safe that conventional, toxic chemical-intensive conventional farming.