Organic foods are great, especially fruits and vegetables, but let’s face it. Buying them is more expensive. Just go to the supermarket, you’ll see. More often than not organics are pricier than the normal produce.
You can guess why. Maybe organic farms aren’t as big as conventional farms, so that drives cost up. I don’t know.
A new study in the Agronomy Journal aims to figure out if organic farming techniques can actually be as profitable as conventional agriculture practices:
“In our study we found that diversified systems were more profitable than monocropping,” explains Joshua Posner, University of Wisconsin.
With feed grade premiums the organic systems were more profitable than the Midwestern standards of continuous corn, no-till corn and soybeans, and intensively managed alfalfa.
Rotational grazing of dairy heifers was as profitable as the organic systems. And to our surprise, including risk premiums into the evaluation did not change the ranking of the systems. This study indicates that governmental policy that supports mono-culture systems is outdated and support should be shifted to programs that promote crop rotations and organic farming practices.
In related news, other reports have claimed current organic food standards may put people at risk and according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture pre-sliced organic fruits and veggies cannot be given to school children because they are considered processed foods.