Re: Organic is sustainable
Kathleen Delate (email@example.com)
Tue, 6 Feb 1996 16:14:19 -1000
I agree with Ronald Nigh's assessment that USDA certification is
necessary to prevent fraud, which permeates organic farming as much as
any other business (hopefully less). All the organic farms I know have
far less exposed soil than conventional farms-using close spacing and/or
intercrops/mulches between rows. I also agree with Ronald that the word
"sustainable" has been co-opted by those seeking funding or any excuse
not to work ("because we're already sustainable"). A new word is
needed-what about "agroecological." In an agroecological approach, the
philosophy of respect for the natural cycles of the land (recycling
nutrients and adding organic matter through rotations, etc.) is inherent.
Re. the economics issue: the jury is still out. The Northwest Foundation found
that sustainable farms were "no more in debt" than conventional farms,
and the SA farms produced without benefit of federal support programs.
Think what may occur if SA farms received support for planting cover
crops, rotating crops, and all the other needed SA practices!
University of Hawaii