Put simply, organic farming is an agricultural system that seeks to provide you, the consumer, with fresh, tasty and authentic food while respecting natural life-cycle systems.
To achieve this, organic farming relies on a number of objectives and principles, as well as common practices designed to minimise the human impact on the environment, while ensuring the agricultural system operates as naturally as possible.
Typical organic farming practices include:
- Wide crop rotation as a prerequisite for an efficient use of on-site resources
- Very strict limits on chemical synthetic pesticide and synthetic fertiliser use, livestock antibiotics, food additives and processing aids and other inputs
- Absolute prohibition of the use of genetically modified organisms
- Taking advantage of on-site resources, such as livestock manure for fertiliser or feed produced on the farm
- Choosing plant and animal species that are resistant to disease and adapted to local conditions
- Raising livestock in free-range, open-air systems and providing them with organic feed
- Using animal husbandry practices appropriate to different livestock species
But organic farming is also part of a larger supply chain, which encompasses food processing, distribution and retailing sectors and, ultimately, you. Each link in this supply chain is designed to play an important role in delivering the benefits associated with organic food production across a wide range of areas detailed elsewhere on this website, including:
So every time you buy an organic apple from your local supermarket, or choose a wine made from organic grapes from the menu at your favourite restaurant, you can be sure they were produced according to strict rules aimed at respecting the environment and animals.