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Origins Of The Organic Movement Essay

3598 words - 15 pages

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| Johnson & Wales
Shane Howlett
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[Origins of the Organic Movement and its impact on society] |
Winter Term Honors Project FSM 1070 Professor Scott Smith T/Th 2-4 CRN: 21563 |

Table of Contents
Introduction……………………………………………………………………………….1

Origins of the Organic Movement………………………………………………………...2

Pre-World War II………………………………………………………………….3

Post-World War II………………………………………………………...…........5

Impacts of the Revolution…………………………………………………………………9

Future Plans of the Organic Revolution………………………………………………….10

The Organic Certification Process……………………………………………………….11

Negative Impacts and Criticism of the Organic Movement …………………………….12

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Organic food has been seen as an unsophisticated method of farming and also as an unnecessary method used by hippies and tree-huggers to rebel against modern society. Organic foods are often chosen by gourmet chefs as they are considered more flavorful and of higher quality than conventional foods. Organic food does have an official definition given by the National Organic Standards board, which is a government appointed program. (Lipson 1-3). The definition is as follows:
Organic agriculture is an ecological production management system that promotes and enhances biodiversity, biological cycles, and soil biological activity. It is based on minimal use of off-farm inputs and on management practices that restore, maintain, and enhance ecological harmony. The principal guidelines for organic production are to use materials and practices that enhance the ecological balance of natural systems and that integrate the parts of the farming system into an ecological whole. The primary goal of organic agriculture is to optimize the health and productivity of interdependent communities of soil life, plants, animals and peoples. (National)

While organic farming has its benefits, it also has some downfalls. Organic food has been criticized for being unsustainable and unable to feed the world. Organic food also has a high costs and we will discuss these issues later in the paper.
In my paper I plan to discuss the history of the organic revolution, the impacts of the revolution, the organic certification process, future plans and practices, negative impacts and criticism.
Origins of the Organic Movement
The organic movement (or organic revolution) began in the early 1900s in response to the shift towards synthetic nitrogen fertilizers and pesticides. The organic movement was mostly under wraps in its first stages, kept together by a relatively small group of ecologically minded farmers (Fromartz 4). These farmers came together into various associations: Demeter International of Germany, which encouraged biodynamic farming and began the first certification program, the Soil Association of the United Kingdom, and Rodale Press in the United States, to name a few (Fromartz 4-22). In 1972 these organizations joined to form the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM). In recent years, environmental awareness has driven demand and conversion to organic farming. Some governments, including the European Union, have begun to support organic farming through agricultural subsidy reform. Organic production and marketing have grown at a fast pace (Fromartz 11). At its core, the organic movement is about environmental awareness and ecological sustainability. That philosophy is expressed through its method of farming and its support of that farming through paying higher prices.
Pre-World War II
Many individuals played a part in the revolution, but it all started with Sir Albert Howard. Sir Albert Howard is considered the father of...

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