A recent article in the Australian Financial Review caught our attention, titled "Why it's worth paying more for organic food". The article can be viewed in full here.
The article highlights the continually growing trend in the Australian market towards foods, and products that are Certified Organic. The author notes that she thinks this is about the only area of "normal" life that she can control on an ongoing basis.
She poses the question: Why pay more for organic products?
"It costs more to grow food without cutting corners, without cheating Mother Nature..."
The risk to growing organic dried vine fruit is pests and disease at the vineyard, including mildew. Conventional farming allows the spraying of chemicals to control this disease which can wreak havoc and spread quickly throughout a vineyard. Being organic we do not apply such practices or chemicals. We have developed a proprietary application which we spray as a preventative management system. We have had great success with this system. The cost comes in that we require 2 or 3 passes through a vineyard, paying multiple labourers the standard wage compared to the conventional spray which can cost as little as cents per acre, requiring a single staff member and a tractor.
"... levels relate to individual pesticides and herbicides and cocktail effects ... aren't taken into account"
Effects of consuming these "cocktails" are not yet fully known. What of course is known is that allergies and asthma are on the rise, as are incidents of cancers. The article references research which considers the levels of pesticides (organophosphates) prior to and post consuming a mainly organic diet (80% organic) resulting in a 90% reduction (based on urine samples) in a single week. Other results demonstrated health benefits in individuals such as reduced levels of depression, anxiety and stress.
It is great to see that the consumption of organic produce is gaining increased attention. It validates what we at Murray River Organics are so passionate about - being a sustainable source of healthy food for current and future generations.