Today, organic is everywhere, and yet the label alone is not enough. Eating organic is not a trend but the real future of our food. Being mindful of the products we buy is good for the planet, for animals, and for our long-term health.

Agriculture is considered organic when it is carried out in compliance with ecological practices. How is this achieved? By using natural fertilizers that do not deteriorate the soil or the quality of the produce.

WHY TURN TO ORGANIC FARMING?

Organic farming avoids pesticides and chemical fertilizers. This approach requires more attention and effort than conventional farming, but it ensures higher quality produce. Organic farming employs fertilizers that prevent pollution and maintain the original state, taste, and authenticity of the produce, from the farm to the consumer’s hands.

HOW TO MAINTAIN A FARM WITHOUT PESTICIDES?

Organic farming uses specific, natural seeds to combat diseases. As it avoids pesticides, organic farming constantly battles pests and weeds through daily weeding, crop rotation, or soil solarization. This type of agriculture requires more labor and resources, which can sometimes explain the higher prices of organic products. Consumers are essentially paying for the labor behind quality organic fruits and vegetables.

Organic farming is subject to stringent regulations in Canada and the USA, reflecting a strong emphasis on maintaining the integrity of organic products. In Canada, the organic sector operates under the Canadian Organic Standards (COS), upheld by the Canada Organic Regime (COR), which is overseen by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). Certification bodies like Ecocert Canada, QAI (Quality Assurance International) in its Canadian operations, and CCOF (California Certified Organic Farmers) expanding into Canada, play significant roles in ensuring compliance with these national standards.

DOES ORGANIC FARMING USE FERTILIZERS, AND IF SO, WHICH ONES?

Organic farming doesn’t use traditional fertilizers but rather methods designed to replace mineral fertilizers used in conventional agriculture. Organic fertilizers, derived from animal or plant sources, are commonly used.

These natural fertilizers, made from industrial waste or decomposing plants (compost), can be produced at home and used as a natural fertilizer. They are better for the planet and for fruits and vegetables than chemical fertilizers. Compost, after several months, becomes a fertile and nutritious soil additive.

Organic manure, a technique used for generations, consists of animal excrement and straw. Just as there are dietary supplements for us, agriculture also uses complementary fertilizers.

What’s the Role of Complementary Fertilizers?

They provide essential nutrients that the soil lacks. Options include green fertilizers, nettle manure, seaweed, or fish bone meal. Each has specific properties and may be rich in nitrogen, phosphorus, or potassium. It’s crucial to find the best fertilizer that suits your needs.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

There are numerous natural alternatives to chemical fertilizers that can be more economical. The main difference is that they require more soil maintenance and a deeper understanding of your plantations’ needs. Each soil type is different, and techniques that work for one may not work for another. It’s essential to know your soil type and the type of farming you wish to undertake to choose the most suitable fertilizers.

Farmers are increasingly leaning towards organic farming, but it requires significant organization. Transitioning to organic farming involves a significant period of adaptation. It’s a change that requires patience and rigor, as it only becomes profitable after several years. However, the long-term visible results, coupled with contributing to planetary health and gaining increasingly loyal consumers, make it a worthwhile endeavor.