Trends can be a tricky thing when you don’t have the right facts. It is easy to jump on the bandwagon if you’re being pressured into believing something and in many cases, this can happen without your knowledge. Yet, some things, once believed to be trends, can turn into solid facts, such as the worldwide efforts to look at a post fossil fuel world and provide a clean world for future generations. With all this talk of fake news, we decided to do a little digging to find out which food and agriculture trends are going to help the planet or just waste our time.
Eating locally grown food helps the environment.
Eating locally grown food sounds like a charming, sunny afternoon spent looking at ripe tomatoes and colourful stands at your local farmers market. But is it as appealing for your wallet? The answer is a bit tricky.
Have you ever walked in to your supermarket, looked around at the aisles and thought “Where did this all come from?”. In many cases, our food comes from far away so that we can have a fruit that is out of season or a snack from a different country. What many people fail to realize are the indirect costs of shipping these products, not just how far but also by which transportation method. It is generally believed that food grown close to home helps the environment because it requires less fossil fuels to transport, generating fewer greenhouse gas emissions than conventionally produced food.
However, it is not all rainbows and butterflies for local farmers. Presently, it is not economically viable for small farmers to ensure sustainable farming methods, organic produce, and make money. This is a privilege that currently only big, industrial farms enjoy because they have the resources to pay for the efficient technology and generally cultivate cheaper, more fertile land - although it can be far away.
Small and local farmers need the right tools so their farms can reach the standards of organic, sustainable produce and also be profitable. Companies, such as Avenews-GT, are determined to bring small and local markets into the competitive, sustainable global arena by providing a digital platform for efficient trading methods and expanding the reach of all farmers - big or small.
Organic farms don’t use pesticides.
We can’t talk about trends without bringing up organic food. Whether or not the increasing demand for naturally grown produce has a solid foundation, a trend is a trend is a trend. We love the idea of consuming healthier food; what we don’t love is the amount of people who think that organic farms use little to no chemicals. In fact, many organic farms use more pesticides than conventional farms - which is not necessarily a bad thing. In this case, it’s quality over quantity.
Organic pesticides are derived from natural sources and processed lightly if at all before use. This is different than the pesticides used by conventional agriculture, which are generally synthetic and perceived to be more toxic. So when are signing up for an organic lifestyle, it’s not that you aren’t consuming pesticides - it’s that they are natural. However, natural pesticides are not totally healthy. Studies show that some natural pesticides are just as harmful, if not more, than synthetic pesticides. A key factor for organic and conventional food quality is farming methodology. Some farmers may be organic-certified but spray crops more frequently because organic pesticides are less effective than conventional ones. This could have a neutralizing effect on what should have been a less toxic produce.
Our opinion? Be more informed about farming methods. Bottom line, it really depends on what methods are used by farmers. Some conventional farms use no pesticides while some organic farms spray their crops too often and vice versa. To really know what you’re eating, it's best if you know your source, and a great way to do that is to buy knowledgeably. Eating healthy starts with awareness and having access to products that suit your lifestyle. Avenews-GT’s approval process for sellers and buyers of agricultural produce allows for verified and transparent transactions - bringing unique and high-quality ingredients across the globe to new markets. Organic is a personal choice, but we are definitely on the health bandwagon.