9 Organic Facts for a Successful Earth Day Message
04.06.2016 | Author: Global Organics | Category: Organic & Sustainability
Increasingly, as scientific research shows ecosystem and health benefits of organic food and farming, market studies find a rising demand for organic products. Coincidence? We think not. Surveys show that consumers want more information about the food they eat – they're looking for your sustainability story and what better time to share your story than Earth Day?
As a company, your decision to use organic ingredients has a positive impact on the environment and human health. Sharing this powerful story will showcase your knowledge and help consumers feel good about choosing your products. To make your message even more effective, reinforce it with scientific evidence that your product offers benefits by using organic and sustainable ingredients. How else will shoppers know your product is the right choice? This also ties in nicely with an explanation of your values as a sustainable company. Consumers will love your transparency.
As our Earth Day gift to you, we did the legwork! We reviewed research on the benefits of organic food and farming and summarized some key facts that you can share with your customers this Earth Day:
- Fewer pesticide residues*: the largest meta-analysis on the subject to date found pesticide residues four times more often in conventional than organic foods (British Journal of Nutrition). Other studies have shown that switching to an organic diet can reduce the concentration of pesticides in blood and urine, i.e. eating organic lowers your dietary pesticide exposure (Environmental Health Perspectives 2009 and 2015). Reducing pesticide levels in the body is important because certain exposures have been linked to health problems including cancer and birth defects (President's Cancer Panel).
- Saving our waterways: agricultural pesticides have been found in waterways across the United States, many at levels below human health limits but over safe limits for aquatic life (National Water Quality Assessment program). Luckily, research has indicated that the use of organic farming methods can improve water quality (Sustainable Agriculture Research).
- Supporting pollinator health: studies have found that neonicotinoids, a class of pesticides, has negative impacts on bees even at low levels (Nature and Scientific Reports). On the other hand, research shows that organic farming practices help to alleviate threats to pollinators and organic farms support more pollinators than their conventional counterparts (The Organic Center).
- Preserving biodiversity: on average, organic farms have 30% more species than conventional farms (Journal of Applied Ecology) and the presence of organic farms can even increase biodiversity on conventional farms nearby (Proceedings B). Biodiversity is critical for maintaining balance and impacts an ecosystem’s ability to regenerate soil, control pests, disease and pollution, resist invasive species and recover from disasters.
- Improving soil fertility: compared to conventional, the soil on organic farms has higher concentrations of nutrients (Organic Agriculture), improved soil structure (Sustainable Agriculture Research) and greater microbial diversity and activity (Crop Management). All of this adds up to improved soil fertility, which better supports plant growth.
- Healthier farmers: farm workers are routinely exposed to pesticides and can experience serious health problems as a result (Farmworker Justice). Organic methods reduce these health risks by only using certain pesticides* on a very limited basis.
- Mitigating climate change: organic agriculture can help sequester carbon in the soil and also reduce greenhouse gas emissions compared to conventional agriculture (Science Bulletin).
- Organic = non-GMO: If your customers are concerned about the healthfulness or environmental effects of genetic engineering, you can reassure them that the use of GMOs are not allowed in certified organic farming or food production (Organic Trade Association).
- Nutrients and antioxidants: as if the environmental benefits weren’t enough, organic produce has 25% higher levels of 11 key nutrients on average! (The Organic Center) Organic foods also have a greater concentration of antioxidants, which help protect against diseases (British Journal of Nutrition).
To learn about how your use of Global Organics ingredients can be a part of your Earth Day story, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
*It is true that organic agriculture is not always 100% free of synthetic inputs. If all other methods fail, organic farmers have restricted access to a regulated National List of 25 synthetic active pest control products. However, the benefits summarized above hold true despite the occasional use of synthetics from the National List. To learn more, visit the Organic Trade Association.