While chemistry has been a great benefit to us, sometimes its applications have caused harm. The widespread use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers is an example. One step towards the solution is growing more organic food.
How pesticides and fertilizers harm the earth
India started the 'Green Revolution' in the 1960s. During this time, the amount of food that could be grown in every acre of land increased manifold through the use of pesticides and fertilizers. However, these have many dangerous side-effects.
Chemical pesticides not only kill harmful insects like weevils and borers, but also beneficial insects like butterflies and bees. Many plants depend on these insects for their pollination and seed dispersal. These pesticides do not break down, but accumulate in the plants. This can lead to a dangerous build up that causes harmful health effects in people who eat these foods.
Fertilizers have a similar effect. They were originally used to provide nutrients to crop plants that were not present in enough quantities in the soil. However, over time fertilizers lead to the quality of the soil becoming worse, till it is unable to support agriculture.
Go 'organic' to save the earth
The concept of 'organic farming' was proposed by Walter James in his 1940 book 'Look to the Land'. In it, he suggested a sustainable, ecologically-balanced method of farming. Foods grown by such a method are called 'organic foods'.
By definition, an organic food item is one which was grown without the use of artificial fertilizers, pesticides or any other chemicals. They are considered healthier than ordinarily grown fruits and vegetables because of this.
Instead of fertilizers, organic food crops are grown with the help of manure and natural wastes, which are rich in nitrogen. Pests are controlled by using more naturally resistant crop varieties, neem extract and other herbal methods.
An organic food item is one which was grown without the use of artificial fertilizers, pesticides or any other chemicals.
How to find organic food
Organically grown food looks just like any other food! So how do you know that what you are buying is organic?
In India, you can currently buy organically grown Basmati rice, pulses, honey, tea, spices, coffee, oil seeds, fruits, cereals and herbal medicines. Such foods are stamped with the 'India Organic' mark. This mark tells you that the food was inspected and certified that it was organically grown.
Here's a video of how organic farming is practised:-
Video titled 'India Produce Large Global Organic Supplies' from www.YouTube.com.