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Decarbonise the air, recarbonise the soil.To feed the world, to clean the air and water, we need to change what we do with our soils.This podcast looks at the many variants of regenerative food growing. How? Why? When?We must be the ChangeUnderground!


54 #worldorganicnews 2017 03 06


WORLD ORGANIC NEWS in the Australian Podcast Awards Click here


Conventional not Organic Farmers Should Pay a Premium | Positive Health Leadership



This is the World Organic News for the week ending 8th of March 2017.

Jon Moore reporting!


This week we begin with a very interesting notion: Conventional not Organic Farmers Should Pay a Premium from the blog: Positive Health Leadership.


This is an idea that’s been rolling round in the back of my mind for sometime.

From the post:


Currently, organic farmers pay a premium to grow and sell organic food – while conventional farmers pay nothing additional.  This also translates to a higher cost to consumers for organic food.  Thus it is a deterrent from buying or growing organic food. Despite the premium costs associated with organic foods, reports suggest purchases of organic foods are growing dramatically, over 100% per year.

End Quote.


There’s more to this than meets the eye!


A further quote:


From a systems perspective, organic farmers are a positive contributing interdependent component of the whole system.  Organic farmers improve the system while contributing to it, by providing healthy food to humans, without taking away from the whole system.  Conventional farmers on the other hand are not able to function without getting external inputs in the form of petroleum fertilizers to be able to produce their output.  The fertilizers then hurt the whole system in many ways such as contributing to climate change, leaching carbon, and by hurting other species such as bee’s and in many other ways.

End Quote.


To all these points we can add: the long term health costs of obesity and type 2 diabetes; the probable link between glyphosate and cancers, the known links between organophosphates and organochlorines and cancers. And those last two chemicals are persistent in the environment taking generations to decompose to safer compounds. Then we can add in the unaccounted for, financially,  carbon effects of manufacturing and transporting pesticides, herbicides and fertilisers.


These health costs are not included in the cost of food because in most governing systems agriculture and health are separate departments. A silo effect takes over and as an example from here in Australia and I imagine elsewhere in the world, salmonella is endemic in the guts and housing systems used to produce chicken meat. Rather than the Departments of Primary Industry financing a cull of infected birds and systems it is left up to the Department of Health and the Food Safety Authority to enforce strict cooking controls to ensure the salmonella is destroyed just prior to consumption.


I know, this is ridiculous. It exposes so many more people, from the stock handlers to the factory processors to the cooks and then exposes the public if an error occurs in the cooking process. If anyone is infected, the health systems bears the cost.


And if you want to produce organic food for sale you need to pay a rent to an authority who will allow you to put a logo on your food. If you wish to continue depleting soil carbon, encouraging erosion, over producing a commodity (in the USA and the EU at any rate) you will be paid a subsidy to do so.



If  polluters paid a premium, the system would change from encouraging the use of polluting methods to supporting, encouraging, nurturing and reinforcing health promoting practices.  Such a change could have dramatic positive effects on the quality of our personal and planetary health. This change would also make organic, not petroleum laced food, the less expensive and natural, or default choice.

End Quote.


So what’s to be done. We can lobby, annoy, become the squeaky wheel and make life as difficult as possible for the non-organic sector. We can buy organic, grow your own, swap seeds and still the Monsantos and Bayers of this world seem to steam roll along. I see a time coming, however, where the mounting evidence will overwhelm even the legal departments and the lobbyist’s cash. We can must support independent science, we must stand behind those doing the detective work. Too many have been attacked and vilified using the “Tobacco is healthy” playbook from the 20th century.


There is change coming and any of us who witnessed the fall of the Berlin Wall, the dissolution of the USSR and the economic rise of China can simultaneously see both the suddenness of change and the years of work to bring it about. We are and have been since WW2 fighting against chemical oil based food systems and the data is well and truly in, now we fight the entrenched interests, the political inertia and then we win!


And that brings us to the end of this week’s podcast.


If you’ve liked what you heard, could please follow the link in the show notes and vote for World Organic News in the Australian Podcast Awards Click here Thanks in advance.


Any suggestions, feedback or criticisms of the podcast or blog are most welcome. email me at


Thank you for listening and I'll be back in a week.





WORLD ORGANIC NEWS in the Australian Podcast Awards Click here


Conventional not Organic Farmers Should Pay a Premium | Positive Health Leadership

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