Organic Agriculture

MattShizzle
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Organic Agriculture

I put forth that Organic agriculture is an irrational idea. Not being an expert, I would appreciate some feedback from those with a better understanding of the science behind all this. Organic agriculture refuses to use chemical means of fertilization or pesticide. I believe they also don't use genetically modified crops (being afraid of gene-mod is extremely irrational.) Anyway, these 3 methods keep millions of people from starving to death. Organic agriculture doesn't improve the flavor or nutrition of the food grown (and may even harm it) and definitely reduces yeilds. Even if only a signifigant minority of farmers use organic farming, the reduction of food supply drives food prices up for everyone (and organic foods themselves are hideously expensive.) It's also bad rather than good for the environment - as more land needs to be used to grow crops, thereby contributing to deforestation and habitat destruction. I'm going by the things I have read and heard and would appreciate feedback.

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 One angle you may have

 One angle you may have missed is that the chemicals used by farmers are either methane or petroleum based, and so could become prohibitively expensive to rely on as a system, since they're unsustainable. I'm not sure that your assertion is true that if organic food prices go up, that petroleum-supported food prices also go up, but it would be difficult to tell right now, since petroleum prices are going up.

Being afraid of genetically modified foods becomes less rational when Monsanto creates self-terminating seeds, and the process by which the plants are modified isn't all that transparent. I'm not sure where you would have heard that foods could actually be harmed by being produced organically - that seems to be a bit of a stretch.

In North America, there's no shortage of land to farm, so it's possible that you're talking about Europe when you say "deforestation"?

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Well, I was actually talking

Well, I was actually talking more about South America, but wildlife habitat destruction is a big issue in the US, too. I do agree that what Monsanto is doing is unethical, and merely for profit, but the use of genemod to actually improve a product is a good idea.

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Organic farming is a lot

Organic farming is a lot like vegetarianism.  It's not all good science, nor is it all bullshit, and to say that you practice organic farming is to say almost nothing at all.  There are as many styles of organic food production as there are types of diets.

Strictly speaking, there isn't a clear cut legal definition of what organic farming is.  There also isn't exactly a clear delineation between genetically modified and natural plants.  After all, everything at your grocery store is genetically modified.  The difference is whether or not genes have been artificially constructed.

There are several reasonably effective pest control methods that do not use synthetic chemicals.  None are as effective as the strongest chemical pesticides, but it is true that pesticide residue is not always removed fully, and it is true that certain chemical techniques produce potentially dangerous results in the food at your grocery.

When you buy organic produce, you must research the company that produced it to know what that means.  For some, it means that they only used natural fertilizer, like manure.  Some used no pest control, which means it's probably hydroponic.  Grow stuff inside, no pests.  For meat products, it usually means they weren't given growth hormones.  Regardless, there is no governing body that enforces claims of organic, so you have to do your research to find out if you're just paying a premium for the same product.  A good rule of thumb:  If the produce is smaller, less vibrant in color, and has more blemishes, it's likely that it was grown without chemicals.

There are some foods that are better when grown naturally.  Tomatoes are the best example.  Of course, tomatoes are extremely susceptible to pests.

It is possible to do small scale, labor intensive growing that is pretty reliable and produces consistent crops without chemical help.  I don't know of any large scale, truly "organic" (in the sense that most people want to believe) methods that can produce near the yield we get now.

Oh, and laboratory genetic modification, if done in the interest of making something better, will make something better.  If there's something on the shelf that isn't safe because of genetic engineering, it's not because engineering is a bad thing.  It's because the corporations who paid for an unsafe product are bad.

 

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Hambydammit

Hambydammit wrote:

[paragraphs of Hamby being right]

Oh, and laboratory genetic modification, if done in the interest of making something better, will make something better.  If there's something on the shelf that isn't safe because of genetic engineering, it's not because engineering is a bad thing.  It's because the corporations who paid for an unsafe product are bad.

The problem, then, for the consumer, is to evaluate whether or not that "bad" effect is a likelyhood or not. So I could buy a "regular", and coincidentally genetically modified apple and consider it a risk, or I could buy an organic apple and feel less like I'm part of an experiment.

HOWEVER, I'm taking an advocate's position from the point of a biologically ignorant consumer. It may or may not be difficult to create a harmful apple by genetic modification. I'm thinking the likelyhood is extremely low that anyone would bother, so I don't think genetically modified foods are a threat.

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In regards to the

In regards to the genetically modified crops there is an arguement that it could be harmfull due to the fact that humans have evolved over thousands of years to eat something a certain way and when you modify it (even slightly) that can cause all sorts of health problems. I'm not an expert in that field so I can't really comment on the specifics. Needless to say there is something very wrong with the way we eat in this country(refering to the USA). We're the fattest people on earth and suffer from all sorts of cronic diseases, heart disease, cancer, allergies, asthma etc. which weren't an issue back during our grandparents time.


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David Naylor wrote:In

David Naylor wrote:

In regards to the genetically modified crops there is an arguement that it could be harmfull due to the fact that humans have evolved over thousands of years to eat something a certain way and when you modify it (even slightly) that can cause all sorts of health problems. I'm not an expert in that field so I can't really comment on the specifics.

Not much of an argument - most foods are genetically modified anyway. Wheat is a good example, as its genes were modified quite rapidly as humanity began to cultivate it. Same with apples, bananas, tomatoes, most beans...
David Naylor wrote:
Needless to say there is something very wrong with the way we eat in this country(refering to the USA). We're the fattest people on earth and suffer from all sorts of cronic diseases, heart disease, cancer, allergies, asthma etc. which weren't an issue back during our grandparents time.
It's all about economy. It's not that anything's gone bad or wrong, it's just that we have more food of higher quality more broadly available. For our health on an individual level it's easy enough to make the small changes nessesary. Let folks make thier own choices.

About cancer: There's more of it because folks are living longer.

"Anyone can repress a woman, but you need 'dictated' scriptures to feel you're really right in repressing her. In the same way, homophobes thrive everywhere. But you must feel you've got scripture on your side to come up with the tedious 'Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve' style arguments instead of just recognising that some people are different." - Douglas Murray


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MattShizzle wrote:I put

MattShizzle wrote:

I put forth that Organic agriculture is an irrational idea. Not being an expert, I would appreciate some feedback from those with a better understanding of the science behind all this. Organic agriculture refuses to use chemical means of fertilization or pesticide. I believe they also don't use genetically modified crops (being afraid of gene-mod is extremely irrational.) Anyway, these 3 methods keep millions of people from starving to death. Organic agriculture doesn't improve the flavor or nutrition of the food grown (and may even harm it) and definitely reduces yeilds. Even if only a signifigant minority of farmers use organic farming, the reduction of food supply drives food prices up for everyone (and organic foods themselves are hideously expensive.) It's also bad rather than good for the environment - as more land needs to be used to grow crops, thereby contributing to deforestation and habitat destruction. I'm going by the things I have read and heard and would appreciate feedback.

Taste is subjective so I'll focus on nutrition.  Organic food is, as studies show, more nutritious.  The reason being is petrol fertilizer is focused on creating higher yields and doesn't provide the soil with an array of nutrients.  Artificial fertilizer is like living on the Atkins diet where you limit your nutritional intake. 

http://www.organicconsumers.org/Organic/organicstudy.cfm

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/06/020603071017.htm

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/86972.php

Organic farming produces similar and sometimes greater yields than untraditional (modern) farming methods.

http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/July05/organic.farm.vs.other.ssl.html

Fertilizers are needed on corporate farms since crop rotation to naturally replenish the soil with nitrogen has ended.  Large corporate farms are more vulnerable to decimation by pests since crop variety can provide natural defenses.  There is also the problem with fertilizer and pesticide runoff infecting the drinking water supply thusly increasing health care costs, but I would say a lot of that has to do with overuse by farmers and poor environmental regulation to control erosion.

The largest downside to organics is the increased use of labor primarily for pulling weeds.  However, since farms are heavily subsidized (otherwise they'd be unprofitable, corn being the best example) what is spent on high petrol costs can be used to pay for labor which eventually makes it's way back into the economy.

Organic farming isn't subsidized to the extent convention farming is subsidized, hence the higher cost at the market.  Also, since the demand for organics is higher than supply that tends to drive up costs as well.  I've also thought that there is a higher markup for organics since marketing studies have shown that consumers are willing to pay 10-15% more for organic food.

I'm rather mixed on genetically modified crops, it primarily depends on how they are modified.  Natural modification through old techniques like grafting or cross pollination are fine (inform Ray Comfort this is how the banana he brags about was developed), but adding and removing genes in a lab like Monsanto does has the effect of creating mutant crops when mixed with non-Monsanto farms.  The greatest complaint I have is Monsanto will sue a farmer if that farmer's farm is unwillingly contaminated with Monsanto's seeds.  One farmer in Ontario successfully sued Monsanto after Monsanto ruined 55 years of product research on the guy's farm.  Monsanto initially sued the farmer but lost.  Monsanto also sues if a farmer does the traditional practice of growing their own seed (as I do with sunflowers, and of course, walnuts on our family farm).  Outside of my bitching about Monsanto my concerning with GM crops is that it may be easier to create an invasive species, it just really depends on how it's modified.  The University of Michigan has developed a strain of corn which enables the entire stalk, not just the ears of corn, to be used to create ethanol by mixing material from a cow's stomach which breaks down the cellolous (sp?).

Hope that helps out with your quest for knowledge. 


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MattShizzle wrote:more land

MattShizzle wrote:

more land needs to be used to grow crops, thereby contributing to deforestation and habitat destruction.

 

The largest cause of deforestation in South America is cattle ranching(http://news.mongabay.com/2008/0124-nepstad.html).   I can't find figures for how much grain is actually used to feed the world's cattle but suffice to say you need more grain to feed a cow than a person so eat less beef (I'm not a vegetarian btw but do limit my red meat intake).  On a more positive note, the Eu have stopped forbidding farmers from using 10% of their land to grow crops on. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/7014999.stm

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From the momma.

I don't have much to add to this topic because other than to give you the "everyday, non-scientific" POV. I don't want to consume chemicals and pesticides, and I do not want my infant child doing to same either. It's no different than my reasons for staying away from cow's milk (other than the fact that it was designed for calves, not humans) is the human growth hormone given to cows. I am of the opinion that our human bodies actually function worse with these additives. Do I think all crops using chemicals should be banned? Not a chance! For adults and children suffering from starvation, malnutrition, and a host of different diseases, a bit of food with traces of pesticides is the least of their worries. You're right when you talk about the non-organic agriculture keeping some parts of starving nations alive. But to ban it completely takes away the choices I have regarding what to feed my family.


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From my POV

My wife works for an organic food distributor, who follows the guideline set forth by the Canadian Food Agency for organic food certification (which is coming in effect as of December 14, 2008, which was announced last year July 21, this being the phase in period allowing farmers to adjust to the new rules for certification. For example any meat sold, the animal must have lived and consumed it's food as close as naturally possible, in other words it must have lived in a natural enviorment or as close to natural for that animal, it must also consume only food that it would naturally consume in the wild. For the most part that means no meat, meat by products or carcasses. For plants it means using only natural fertilizer, and up to 95 percent of the finished consumer product must be organic (what exactly this means I haven't bothered to find out), here is the chemical usage guidelines http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/cgsb/on_the_net/organic/032_0311_2006-e.pdf, basically what can and cannot be used and a basic overview for what they can be used for.

As for genetic crops the issue really is like the Monsanto case for patent rights, it could get to the point that (the absolute worse case scenario) in which a corporation controls the food chain and independent farmers could get sued (again this was a Canadian court that sided with Schmeiser, so in the rest of the world farmers could be sued until they are bankrupted) because of accidental contamination or due to natural pollination process. The other issue with genetically modified food is the fact that it is done in a laboratory, and lets admit people don't really trust corporations that much, with a history of skirting with truth, many consumers don't exactly trust what corporations say about what is safe to consume. I mean medicinal drugs for example have had a bad history, with mental issue's arising from the use of certain drugs to birth of deformed babies that corporations don't like to mention. In the US at least and to an extent to the rest of the world if there is a problem to a product AFTER it was released to the public, corporations usually aren't forth coming about it all. Now if there was something wrong with the food your consuming from genetic alteration, how quickly would a corporation come out and say that is hard to say, but needless to say there could be a large amount of consumers affected. Now again, this is the most common POV from people that I have spoken to about GMO food. Although we have in Canada GMO canola and GMO potatoes. With that said I do consume the potatoes and have been doing so quite some time.


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Organic Farming is central to a Democracy

     Matt wrote that organic farming is irrational. I strongly disagree with that statement. when you take a closer look at this man made disaster ,(GMO's) they have the ability to do more harm to the Human race than Nuclear weapons. When you farm with chemicals,you not only kill the soil's immune system and its nutrients and bad insects,the water and air ,but also the worms ,which are so beneficial to the plants,plus pollinators,and remember what Einstein said about the lost of the bee's pollination abilities of the food the we need to survive.here's a few good links on the subject as I see it  www.seedsofdeception.com/Public/Home/index.cfm , the title of this documentary is "Life Running Out of Control" a real eye opener~www.linktv.org/programs/running ~ and then there is www.corpwatch.org/article.php ~ U.S. Monsanto "seed police" scrutinies farmers. 

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Organic is in fact better

MattShizzle wrote:

I put forth that Organic agriculture is an irrational idea. Not being an expert, I would appreciate some feedback from those with a better understanding of the science behind all this. Organic agriculture refuses to use chemical means of fertilization or pesticide. I believe they also don't use genetically modified crops (being afraid of gene-mod is extremely irrational.) Anyway, these 3 methods keep millions of people from starving to death. Organic agriculture doesn't improve the flavor or nutrition of the food grown (and may even harm it) and definitely reduces yeilds. Even if only a signifigant minority of farmers use organic farming, the reduction of food supply drives food prices up for everyone (and organic foods themselves are hideously expensive.) It's also bad rather than good for the environment - as more land needs to be used to grow crops, thereby contributing to deforestation and habitat destruction. I'm going by the things I have read and heard and would appreciate feedback.

 

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To the topic starter, MattShizzle, you said:

“I put forth that Organic agriculture is an irrational idea. Not being an expert, I would appreciate some feedback from those with a better understanding of the science behind all this.”

I actually happen to know a lot about organic foods and all natural living in general because I was raised on it by my stepmother. She is a microbiologist and has the education of a medical doctor. She was in college to become a naturopathic doctor, but ran out of money. Hopefully my knowledge on the subject will help the confusion.

“Organic agriculture refuses to use chemical means of fertilization or pesticide. I believe they also don't use genetically modified crops (being afraid of gene-mod is extremely irrational.)”

Refusing to use chemicals and pesticides as well as herbicides and other dangerous products is how farming has been done originally for thousands of years before high populations demanded more food and faster. And you’re right, they don’t use genetically modified crops as well, but it’s not due to an irrational fear. The fact is simply that genetically altered foods are dangerous and a serious risk to your health.

Genetically modified food is actually funded by major drug companies, as well as corporations like tobacco giant Phillip Morris, which owns Kraft foods. The effects of these foods are completely unknown and have in fact raised a lot of concerns amongst well-respected scientists, as well as many doctors. Very little testing has been done to see what kind of effects these foods will have on our health.

You can find more information on this topic at Mercola.com and Naturalnews.com. Dr. Joseph Mercola of Mercola.com makes this observation:

There is no telling what the consequences of using these genetically modified foods will be. Already, investigators have found that rats fed genetically modified potatoes had an increased thickening in the lining of their stomach and intestine and a weakening of their immune system. Further, some scientists want to put vaccines into plants without any real knowledge of what effects this unnatural addition will have on human health, or the health of our planet.

This is SHEER LUNACY.

What these scientists have failed to fully appreciate is that once these genetically modified plants are growing it is physically impossible to prevent them from pollinating other plants, thereby contaminating them with these new proteins, of which we do not know the long-term consequences.

The absurdity of the entire process is mind-boggling. These scientists are willing to sacrifice the country’s food supply by adding vaccines, which do not even work, to plants.

If this continues, our grandchildren may not have access to any non-genetically modified food, and the health of our society may continue to rapidly decline.

Genetically modified foods did not exist prior to 1995. Ninety percent of the money Americans spend on food is spent on processed foods, and seventy percent of processed foods have genetically modified foods in them.

There have been NO STUDIES done with humans to show what happens when genetically modified foods are consumed. The FDA has ASSUMED that these modified foods are equivalent to the original foods and does not require any studies to have them approved, despite the fact that this technology has never before existed in the history of the world.”

-http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2003/01/01/gm-foods-part-five.aspx

If you’re unable to see this link, you probably have to become a member to the site in order to view it. Just send me an e-mail if that’s the case, and I’ll send you the whole article (slstringer7@gmail.com)

Here are other links that might help people learn more about gm foods:

Naturalnews.com

http://www.cqs.com/50harm.htm

http://www.actionbioscience.org/biotech/pusztai.html

http://www.centerforfoodsafety.org/geneticall7.cfm

“Anyway, these 3 methods keep millions of people from starving to death. Organic agriculture doesn't improve the flavor or nutrition of the food grown (and may even harm it) and definitely reduces yields. Even if only a signifigant minority of farmers use organic farming, the reduction of food supply drives food prices up for everyone (and organic foods themselves are hideously expensive.)”

I can certainly agree that organic foods seem to be more expensive than the processed foods you buy, but that could be for several very good reasons: Firstly there’s the fact that although organic agriculture is growing, less people demand it than they do non-organic foods, therefore naturally, pricing is going to be different. Once more people demand it, more supply will be given, and the prices will even out. Secondly, places like Wal-Mart sell so much because a lot of their food is so cheap. And it’s cheap because it is POOR quality, not high quality. Ingredients like high fructose corn syrup, aspartame, MSG and artificial flavoring/coloring aren’t nearly as expensive as real sugar, real flavors and real food. There are ways of buying organic food cheaper though. It’s not impossible to find wholesome, healthy and unmodified foods which dangerous ingredients while sticking with your original budget. I do it every Sunday. The “365” brand at Wild Oats, which is a branch of Whole Foods Markets, costs me the same as the brands I buy at Wal-Mart.

And I don’t know where you got the notion that organic food isn’t better in flavor or nutrition, but I beg to differ.  Have you ever eaten an all organic, all natural meal before? I grew up eating processed, non-organic and genetically modified foods until I met my stepmother when I was about ten. The food she cooks is like going to an expensive restaurant and eating a gourmet meal, and it’s not just because she’s a good cook. The food she uses and the ingredients themselves taste different. Things have different texture, flavor and you don’t feel sick or bloated after the meal. I’ve gone from organic to processed off and on every other weekend my entire life, and I can tell you organic tastes better. I’m sure there are people who have different preferences than me, but the taste is just my personal opinion. Fortunately flavor or taste isn’t the issue here: nutrition is. Whether a carrot tastes better than chocolate is irrelevant here. Organic is better for your health. Period.

As for nutritional value, there’s no contest. According to a $25-million study into organic food:

· Organic fruit and vegetables contain up to 40 percent more antioxidants.

· Organic produce had higher levels of beneficial minerals like iron and zinc.

· Milk from organic herds contained up to 90 percent more antioxidants.

And yet again, Dr. Mercola has something to say here as well:

Many “health” experts continue to state that there is little difference between organic and conventionally raised produce, but if they review this evidence, they will likely have to change their tune.

Food grown in healthier soil, with natural fertilizers and no chemicals, simply has to be more nutritious. It is common knowledge -- though knowledge that is greatly suppressed in the United States.

A 2003 study in the Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry, for example, found that organic foods are better for fighting cancer.

And in 2005, scientists found that, compared to rats that ate conventional diets, organically fed rats experienced various health benefits. Rats that ate organic or minimally fertilized diets had:

  • Improved immune system status
  • Better sleeping habits
  • Less weight and were slimmer than rats fed other diets
  • Higher vitamin E content in their blood (for organically fed rats)

 

 

“It's also bad rather than good for the environment - as more land needs to be used to grow crops, thereby contributing to deforestation and habitat destruction. I'm going by the things I have read and heard and would appreciate feedback.”

It’s actually good for the environment. Only when big corporations like General Mills and Kraft foods make it a market niche and claim their foods as organic when it’s really not, does it cause the taking of more land. In fact, truly organic food is mostly grown by small family farms and local farms. I see nothing wrong with replacing processed and chemically altered foods with organics. We wouldn’t be taking more land, just the same land that’s being used for unhealthy foods.

For those of us who don’t know what Organic actually even means:

To be labeled “certified organic” by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the food must be free of most:

  • Pesticides
  • Synthetic fertilizers
  • Hormones
  • Antibiotics
  • Genetic modification
  • Irradiation 

But many argue that true organic food also entails respect for locally produced food, respect for livestock and employees, and environmentally sustainable practices -- something that is rarely a goal of large-scale food manufacturers.

And according to a comment by Dr. Mercola:

The 2007 report “Hazardous Pesticides in the European Parliament” reveals the disturbing truth that conventionally grown fruits are far more toxic than you might think.

Eight fruit samples, randomly selected at the GB express supermarket in the EU Parliament building in Brussels, were found to be contaminated with no less than 28 different pesticide residues, averaging almost five residues per fruit.

These chemicals included:

  • 10 known carcinogens
  • 3 neurotoxins
  • 3 reproductive and developmental toxins
  • 8 endocrine disruptors

Two of the chemicals are classified as “Highly Hazardous” by the World Health Organization (WHO), and three of the samples contained such high levels of residue that they were, officially, illegal.

Also, as for the environment issue:

Organic farming differs from conventional farming in the methods used to grow crops, which has a major impact on your environment.

 For example:

  • Where conventional farmers apply chemical fertilizers to the soil to grow their crops, organic farmers feed and build soil with natural fertilizer, which is far less likely to cause any long-term environmental complications.
  • Conventional farmers use insecticides to get rid of insects and disease, while organic farmers use natural methods such as insect predators and barriers for this purpose.
  • Conventional farmers control weed growth by applying synthetic herbicides, but organic farmers use crop rotation, tillage, hand weeding, cover crops and mulches to control weeds.

    While herbicides are not nearly as dangerous as insecticides, they still are synthetic chemicals introduced into the environment and clearly are not something that will improve your health.

The article “Better Beef,” written by California rancher Dave Evans and published in the March 2008 issue of Best Life magazine, gives a great in-depth view of the many benefits of grass-fed beef, from environmental sustainability to the sheer difference in taste and nutrient content of the beef. 

Evans also offers this list of grass-fed beef ranchers in the United States, where you can find good-quality meats: 

In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. -George Orwell


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Sarahly

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Sarahly wrote:I actually

Sarahly wrote:

I actually happen to know a lot about organic foods and all natural living in general because I was raised on it by my stepmother. She is a microbiologist and has the education of a medical doctor. She was in college to become a naturopathic doctor, but ran out of money.

Irrelevant. My mother-in-law is a college educated medical professional who still believes in reflexology, healing oils and the like. A college degree does not confer rationality(although it should). Frankly, from reading up on naturopathic doctors and what they tend to believe, I would have to say I am not impressed.

Sarahly wrote:

It’s actually good for the environment. Only when big corporations like General Mills and Kraft foods make it a market niche and claim their foods as organic when it’s really not, does it cause the taking of more land. In fact, truly organic food is mostly grown by small family farms and local farms.

You don't grasp the problem. Factory farming is what is keeping the huge mass of people alive on this planet right now. Organic farming requires more intensive work with smaller crop yields. That means that if one acre fed 10 people under convetional farming, it would only feed 5-8 under organic farming(depending on the conditions). While I have no problem with personal small scale farming(I have a small garden in my back yard), the simple fact is that you would have to take 20-50% MORE land for cultivation if we went all organic and the population stayed exactly the same. This would force the conversion of a lot of natural environments to farmland. The only other option is to eliminate 20-50% of the current population, which I'm sure will go over well.

I would also note that the increased need for labor on the organic farm also raises the price. Look at what a spike in corn prices caused(riots and such). Now imagine what will happen when every piece of food experiences a similar price hike.

So, the bottom line is that neither conventional factory farming nor large scale organic farming will answer the problem. Genetically engineered food combined with some form of hydroponics is likely to be the only way we'll be able to feed a growing population.

All that is necessary for the triumph of good is that evil men do nothing.


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There is no evidence that

There is no evidence that gene-modified food is dangerous at all. Don't forget, we've been altering crops one way or another for thousands of years now. Irradiating food is also safe - it doesn't make it radioactive. It may remove some nutrients, but to a far lesser extent than cooking the food will.

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"Irrelevant. My

"Irrelevant. My mother-in-law is a college educated medical professional who still believes in reflexology, healing oils and the like. A college degree does not confer rationality(although it should). Frankly, from reading up on naturopathic doctors and what they tend to believe, I would have to say I am not impressed."

That wasn't even my point in bringing it up. I was just explaining WHY I know about it. If you're not impressed with naturopathic doctors, you should be even less impressed by medical doctors. Naturopathic doctors require a lot more schooling than medical doctors, and they actually have to know some things. They're not just professional drug dealers.

"the simple fact is that you would have to take 20-50% MORE land for cultivation if we went all organic and the population stayed exactly the same. This would force the conversion of a lot of natural environments to farmland."

Or just a lot of unnatural environments into natural farmland. Again, not bad for the environment. Economy maybe, but not the environment. I've actually never considered what it would do to the economy, so you got me there. But the assertion that organic food isn't any better than conventionally grown food is silly.

"The only other option is to eliminate 20-50% of the current population, which I'm sure will go over well."

It won't be hard. Just tell them aspartame is the new pomegranate. My point is that organic food is healthier than conventionally grown food, whether it takes more work or not. Taking up space wouldn't be an issue at all if Americans weren't as lazy as they've become. Anyone with a little bit of space in their yard can grow more than enough food for themselves and their family. This family did: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mCPEBM5ol0Q.

 

"So, the bottom line is that neither conventional factory farming nor large scale organic farming will answer the problem. Genetically engineered food combined with some form of hydroponics is likely to be the only way we'll be able to feed a growing population."

I think the problem is that people are unwilling to take care of themselves and would rather the government do everything for them while they whine like babies. And when that happens, we have mass production with low quality and poor results. I understand your point, and you may be right that organic agriculture won't produce enough...but maybe people are just lazy and unwilling to go the extra mile, even if it means keeping people safe and healthy.

In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. -George Orwell


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MattShizzle wrote:There is

MattShizzle wrote:

There is no evidence that gene-modified food is dangerous at all. Don't forget, we've been altering crops one way or another for thousands of years now. Irradiating food is also safe - it doesn't make it radioactive. It may remove some nutrients, but to a far lesser extent than cooking the food will.

Did you look at any of the links I provided? Or even read anything I said?

In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. -George Orwell


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Naturopathy is a

Naturopathy is a pseudoscience like Homeopathy and Reflexology. I don't care how much training someone has in bullshit. Those links seem to be to pseudoscientific sites.

 

http://skepdic.com/natpathy.html

 

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Sarahly
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MattShizzle

MattShizzle wrote:

Naturopathy is a pseudoscience like Homeopathy and Reflexology. I don't care how much training someone has in bullshit. Those links seem to be to pseudoscientific sites.

 

http://skepdic.com/natpathy.html

 

It's not really bullshit when it actually works. And better than pharmaceutical drugs even.

In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. -George Orwell


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Evidence?

Evidence?


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Excuse you.

"That wasn't even my point in bringing it up. I was just explaining WHY I know about it. If you're not impressed with naturopathic doctors, you should be even less impressed by medical doctors. Naturopathic doctors require a lot more schooling than medical doctors, and they actually have to know some things. They're not just professional drug dealers."

 

Will you please provide some sources or evidence that naturapthic doctors require more schooling than a doctor of scientific medicine? I have VERY close ties to many persons in the medical community, and while I'm willing to admit that I'm incorrect on specific topics, I think you are misinformed regarding educational requirements.

The "traditional" type of doctor we're speaking of is an E.R. doctor, an OB-GYN, a pediatrician, etc. These doctors are not "professional drug dealers" as you would like them to be portrayed. If you and/or your family prefer medical advice and treatment through homeopathic measures, that is perfectly fine. Just like every other person, you are entitled to act upon notions that are your own to live your life the way you feel is best, but smearing the profession of many hard-working and caring individuals is intellectually ignorant.

Just as in ANY profession, that are people who accept corperate funding and in turn become greedy. This is the fault of these individuals and do not reflect on the character of those actually supplying a necessity to communities. Accusing every member of the medical community of being less uneducated than someone practicing naturopathy is ridiculous. While I respect your opinion on the organic matter, your insults about the medical community are uncalled for.