Wednesday, December 17, 2008

What is Organic Cotton?

Organic Cotton is grown in a manner that strives to reduce or eliminate chemical pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers; thus producting a more "environmentally friendly" product. However, there is controversy between conventional cotton growers and organic practitioners as to whose farming practicies promote the greater environmental good.

Organtic cotton growers are perceived as being kinder to the environment because they employ non-chemical farming methods, such as crop rotation and mulching to control weeds, fertilize with organic matter instead of synthetics, make use of beneficial insects for pest control and ban genetically engineered seeds.

Conventional growers contend that by using bio-engineered seeds, synthetic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, they provide greater crop yields than organic framers and thus grow more cotton on less land. Since this spares acreage from being converted into farmland and wastes fewer resources, this would be environmentally sound. They also mention that there is no scientific studies shown that chemical fertilizers are any more harmful to the environment than organic manure runoff.

Whatever organic or conventional growing practices are used, there is increased consumer interest in products that are labeled "Organic", "Eco-Friendly" or "Green". Protecting the environment and achieving sustainable resources for all people, reflects growing awareness of our global interdependence.

The public perception is that chemicals are the bad thing, and it is better to buy natural products that avoid or minimize the use of chemicals. As the green movement gains momentum, consumers are more willing to pay more for goods that they believe are eco-friendly. This explains the appeal of "Organic Cotton" products.

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