So, back to organic and why we take it so seriously…
Carl Bosch (1874-1940), a German chemical engineer helped to design a synthetic fertiliser. The ujse of synthetic fertiliser sky-rocketed during the 1940’s. What followed this has been labelled ‘The Green Revolution’. Large machinery was developed and employed on large fields, making agriculture easier. Hedgerows and trees were eliminated, together with the wildlife that depended on them. To become even more productive, the same crops were grown year in and year out on the same piece of land. The synthetic fertilisers made it possible for this land to continue producing. The idea of replacing organic matter and allowing land to lie fallow died out and traditional practices of mixing and rotating crops were abandoned.
This new way of farming was highly successful, this cannot be denied, BUT….pest, disease and weed problems grew dramatically. To control them…toxic sprays were developed. This created a vicious cycle of ever stronger synthetic fertilisers and ever stronger toxic weed and pest killers.
Below are some links to just a few studies and write ups of the impact of this way of farming.
Next time: A look at some of the pioneers of the organic movement