Food and the Environment

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When we think about consuming the freshest and healthiest food possible, we should ask ourselves: what impact do my shopping choices have on the environment?

Maybe you are someone who wants to become more health conscious and to make healthier choices in your eating habits and lifestyle. You are likely to be interested in foods containing as little chemicals, preservatives, additives, or pesticides as possible. And certainly you would prefer eating foods that are not irradiated or genetically modified. Basically you want to eat food that is all natural.

Organic food is great because it gives you all the things you are looking for, grown naturally the way nature intended it. When buying organic foods, you don’t have to worry because organic farmers follow strict standards to grow the most natural fruits and vegetables.

It’s also great for the environment!

Organic food production actually helps preserve local wildlife. By avoiding toxic chemicals, using mixed planting as a natural pest control measure, organic farming provides a retreat to local wildlife rather than taking it away its natural habitat like conventional agriculture.

Organic food production eliminates soil and water contamination. Since organic food production strictly avoids the use of all synthetic chemicals, it does not pose any risk of soil and underground water contamination like conventional farming which uses tons of artificial fertilizers and pesticides.

It even helps the fight against global warming! Most organically produced food is distributed locally. As a result, less energy is used for transportation which automatically reduces carbon dioxide emissions which are believed to be the main cause of global warming.

So it’s pretty obvious eating organic foods has its benefits when it comes to helping the environment, but are there any other ways of doing it?

Yes, and it’s called entomophagy. Entomophagy is the act of eating insects, preferably for their health benefits. Before you turn your nose up at it, you can read more here.

But why is it good for the environment?

The facts are these: scientists have measured the greenhouse gas production, energy use, and land use involved in raising mealworms (one of the main sources of insect protein) and getting one kilogram of edible protein from them. Then, they measured the same stats for producing one kilogram of protein from livestock. It takes a massive 90 percent less land to produce mealworms than it does to produce beef!

With our population ever increasing and the world running out of arable land that is something to sit up and take notice of! It requires less water, produces less inedible waste, and produces fewer greenhouse gases than raising livestock. There is no denying this is infinitely better for the environment!

And it’s infinitely better for the individual – since the high protein and nutrient value of insects cannot be matched. But that’s a story for another day…..

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