How organic farming will save us all if we can throw away our antiquated notions of what it means

If there is a stereotype of the organic farmer its that they spend their days wrapped in droopy clothes made of hemp and burlap, becoming one with nature while foraging for chanterelles. Yet the reality of many organic farmers couldnt be further from the truth. For those serious about agriculture free of synthetic chemicals, farming is a complex system that requires endless days of laborious work, with the potential to yield lucrative results…

…The idea that organic farming produces more nutritious food isnt likely to surprise many. If anything, it reminds us of a hemp-clad stereotype droning on about their healthier way of life. Yet, organic farming isnt just about producing more nutritious food from healthy soils, or about omitting the use of pesticides, fertilizers, genetically modified organisms, antibiotics or growth hormones. At its core, it is a system of agriculture that addresses a range of environmental and economic issues that go beyond the personal health of whomever brought the smug look and organic kale salad for lunch.

Organic farms generate more money per acre than their conventional counterparts. Even though they are not as big, they are usually far more profitable. The amount of money we generate per acre on the farm is many multiples per acre of what our neighbours produce growing cash crops, says Preston. A well-run small-scale organic farm will generate somewhere in the neighbourhood of $40,000 gross sales per acre. Corn and soy, known as cash-cropsgenerate an average of $300 per acre, according to a 2016 paper published by the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics at the University of Illinois.