‘Organic agriculture’ is a word that has been doing the rounds for some time now. The latest buzzword in the food industry, let us understand what it really is.
The text book definition
Organic agriculture is defined as a more holistic outlook on the traditional methods of growing food for consumption. Organic agriculture seeks to establish and cultivate a healthy relationship with the soil. It avoids the usage of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides and seeks to find ecological solutions to these problems.
Why organic agriculture?
With the ever-increasing global population, food demand is at an all time high. We need to be able to find a sustainable answer to these problems. The after effects of the Green Revolution has left us with a whole host of issues with soil. While it increased the world food production by massive amounts, it has come at a cost. These effects have only been visible in the recent years.
While traditional agriculture focuses on methods that only take from the soil, organic agriculture doesn’t do that. It seeks to develop a relationship with the soil; that involves both giving and taking. It involves growing a variety of crops that don’t simply strip away the soil but replenishes it and allows it time to recover.
The life within soil
Within the soil exists an entire micro universe of its own. With a variety of micro-organisms performing complex functions and helping plant life in many different ways. The process of nutrient creation and generation is deeper than simply adding fertilizers on the surface. The soil does not require excess synthetic nutrients; it can create those on its own.
Relationship with soil
The soil is not an endless reservoir from where we can simply take and take without expecting it to be depleted. It requires a rest and recovery period for it to be able to function again. There needs to be compassion in the way in which soil is treated. Organic agriculture and the movement of sustainability respects the soil. It is aware of the immense potential and wisdom that the soil possesses. And it seeks to work in collaboration with the soil, it does not seek to control it.