8 Reasons to buy organic and sustainably-produced products

  1. Protect future generations

    "Our personal consumer choices have ecological, social, and spiritual consequences. It is time to re-examine some of our deeply held notions that underlie our lifestyles." (David Suzuki) The average child receives four times more exposure than an adult to at least eight widely used cancer-causing pesticides in food. The food choices you make now will impact your child's health in the future.
  2. Prevent soil erosion

    "Long the forgotten child of the environmental movement, there is growing evidence that soils are becoming of greater interest to the general public and the farmers and ranchers who manage them," says the Soil Conservation Council Of Canada (SCCC). "People generally are much more interested in where their food comes from today and much more environmentally aware," says Glen Shaw, executive director of SCCC. "On the farming side, producers are very conscious of the value that soil quality and farming systems represents to their business today and the value of their farm in the future." Soil is the foundation of the food chain in organic farming. Using organic farming methods has a positive effect on soil nutrients and minimizes soil erosion.
  3. Protect water quality

    Water makes up two-thirds of our body mass and covers three-fourths of the planet. Surface and ground water in canada are generally clean. However, it is sometimes locally or regionally polluted. Pollution enters water bodies in a number of ways, including industrial and municipal discharge, runoff, spills, and deposition of airborne pollutants. Algal blooms are a major issue in saskatchewan, which are caused by excessive nitrogen from fertilizer leeching into water. An overload of chemicals results in pollution, which eventually puts the ecosystem out of balance. Even in tiny amounts, some of these substances can cause serious harm. (Environment Canada)
  4. Save energy

    Canadian farms have changed drastically in the last three generations, from family-based small businesses dependent on human energy, to large-scale factory farms highly dependent on fossil fuels and other high inputs. Modern farming uses more petroleum than any other single industry, consuming large amounts of canada's total energy supply. Organic farming is still mainly based on labour-intensive practices such as cultivation and using green manures and crop covers, rather than synthetic fertilizers and sprays to build up soil. Organic produce also tends to travel fewer miles from field to table.
  5. Keep chemicals off your plate

    Pesticide use is associated with two things: toxicity in the environment and causing human health problems. Pesticides have been linked to many different types of cancer in humans from breast cancer (DDT) to non-hodgkins lymphomas and soft-tissue sarcomas (phenoxy herbicides). Chronic low-level exposure to pesticides has been linked to low-grade symptoms such as allergies, headaches, dizziness, nausea, and mental confusion. (Sierra Club Canada). Linkages have also been identified between home and garden pesticide use and leukemia and brain cancer in children. A national cancer institute study in the U.S. indicates that children are as much as six times more likely to get childhood leukemia when pesticides are used in the home and garden.
  6. Protect farm worker health

    Working on conventional farms exposes workers to a wide variety of pesticides and chemicals, which can lead to pesticide poisoning. The workers running grain elevators are subject to emphysema (chronic shortness of breath) which is a direct result of grain dust laden with chemicals. In addition, combine dust is incredibly toxic when exposure is high. Farm worker health is also a serious problem in developing nations, where pesticide use is poorly regulated. An estimated 1 million people worldwide are poisoned annually by pesticides, and more than 6,000 canadians—almost half of them children—suffer acute pesticide poisoning every year, according to the first comprehensive national survey of the issue. (David Boyd 2007)
  7. Promote biodiversity

    Mono-cropping is the practice of planting large plots of land with the same crop year after year. While this approach tripled farm production between 1950 and 1970, the lack of natural diversity of plant life has left the soil lacking in natural minerals and nutrients. To replace these nutrients, chemical fertilizers are used, often in increasing amounts to supplement vitamins and minerals that have been destroyed by chemicals. Single crops are also much more susceptible to pests, making farmers more reliant on pesticides. Using a rotation system with nitrogen fixing crops such as peas replenishes the soil, without the use of chemicals.
  8. Taste better flavor

    There's a good reason why many chefs use organic foods in their recipes—they taste better! Organic farming starts with the nourishment of the soil which eventually leads to the nourishment of the plant and, ultimately, our plates. By choosing organic and local food at retail outlets and restaurants, you are contributing to sustainable agriculture and a better future.