New report highlights importance of U.S. organic food production


Organic vegetables and fruits
Organic vegetables and fruits from U.S. based Coast Range region near Portland, Oregon are produced through CSA – Community Supported Agriculture at Love Farm Organics, a family owned community engaged farm. Image: Love Farm Organics

(WNN) Washington, D.C., UNITED STATES, AMERICAS: Outlining the problems of today’s industrialization of food compared to our organic food supply, a new report released by the Center for Food Safety – Cool Food Campaign, outlines the true impacts of global climate on food security and agricultural resilience.

In the United States climate, especially in the U.S. State of California’s ‘food basket’ producing region, drought and increased temperatures are beginning to impact U.S. food production, says the report “Food and Climate: Connecting the Dots, Choosing the Way Forward.”

One of the efforts that may be able to battle the negative impacts of climate may be organic agriculture, adds the report.

Climate problems including escalating temperature swings, floods and droughts are all contributors to instability in available food supplies inside the U.S.

“Food security requires a stable climate,” says the Center’s Cool Food Campaign.

“It isn’t widely discussed, but the industrialization of our food supply is a major driver of global climate change, and, ironically, this is undermining our future ability to produce an adequate supply of food” says Cool Foods Campaign director Diana Donlon. “In fact, taken in the aggregate, the global food system is responsible for approximately half of all greenhouse gases.”

Industrialized methods of farming, which heavily rely on fossils fuels, use much more carbon based fuels in the process of food production than an equivalent process made by organic farms, which need half the energy to produce food, outlines the Center.

“Droughts and heat waves in 2012 in the U.S. alone affected approximately 80 percent of agricultural land, causing an estimated $30 billion in damages. Already in 2014, California, which produces nearly half the nation’s fruits and vegetables, is experiencing the worst drought in its 153 year history,” outlines the Center’s Cool Food Campaign.

Today the industrial versus organic methods of farming show where resilience in food production actually exists. Organic farming should be encouraged and supported, says the Cool Food Campaign.

“While our current climate trajectory is daunting, a future defined by food insecurity and climate chaos is not inevitable. We can still alter our course. Regenerative, organic agriculture has tremendous, untapped potential to strengthen food security while adapting to climate uncertainties and even helping to mitigate them,” said Donlon.

Recommending that antiquated policies in agriculture are no longer needed the new report by the Center for Food Safety – Cool Food Campaign also calls on the public to pressure their elected officials to work now on sustainable policies to slow the impacts of climate change. Individuals can support farmers to adopt organic methods by voting with their wallets, outlines the report which also suggests that eating fresh unprocessed organic foods should become the new standard for the U.S.

Eliminating industrial meat and dairy consumption, along with buying local is also an important action that can help.

“A stable climate and an abundant food supply are two things every person needs, and we can work toward both with food decisions we make three times a day. It may not seem like much, but if you multiply three times a day over the course of a lifetime, it adds up” added Donlon. “People tend to think of organic agriculture as ‘alternative’…In the face of a changing climate, the report shows that methods that work in concert with powerful natural systems are the way forward,” he added.


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