Switching to organic farming is vital for sustainable food systems, study finds


WADDINXVEEN, The Netherlands — If we are to maintain sustainable food systems for future generations and address the many challenges facing our planet, including the climate crisis, governments would be wise to embrace organic farming practices. This is one of the main conclusions of a new independent study, which concluded that the adoption of organic farming will be crucial to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The report, Organic farming and the Sustainable Development Goals, which is launched today (September 25) to mark the official anniversary of the UN SDGs, says switching to organic farming can help achieve eight of the 17 SDGs. These include several of the most important goals, including taking urgent action to combat climate action and its impacts, protect biodiversity, fight hunger and ensure clean water for all.

Commissioned by Dutch organic farming specialist Eosta, the study, which was conducted by Simon de Schaetzen of the University of Twente in the Netherlands and will be shared across the global organic sector, examines how the organic farming can contribute to the achievement of the United Nations SDGs. Based on a meta-analysis, the research found that a shift towards organic must play a central role if the UN targets are to be met and if we have any chance of meeting the many serious challenges facing the planet is facing.

The report comes exactly four years after 150 world leaders adopted a transformative global agenda for sustainable development, pledging to work together to achieve 17 fundamental goals by 2030 for the benefit of current and future generations. . The SDGs build on the Millennium Development Goals and are intertwined, meaning the success of one can directly affect the success of others.

Practical solutions

Eosta CEO Volkert Engelsman said the global organic sector will use the report to inform policymakers, retailers and the public of the need to switch to organic farming. However, when it comes to achieving the SDGs, he thinks we are not moving fast enough. Engelsman said: “Right now we are in the midst of a huge climate, health and biodiversity crisis and it is important that we focus on realistic practical solutions. We have always been convinced of the positive contribution of organic farming and wanted independent research to look into the matter. Although we are not surprised, we are delighted with the conclusion that organic has such a positive impact”.

He continued, “Together with other organic organizations in Europe, Asia and North America, we will use the report to further promote and develop sustainable organic agriculture around the world.”

Drawing on more than 50 scientific publications, including numerous FAO and UN studies, the report concludes that organic agriculture can play an important role in achieving no less than eight of the 17 UN SDGs. . These include: Zero hunger (SDG 2), Good health and well-being (SDG 3), Clean water and sanitation (SDG 6), Decent work and economic growth (SDG 8), Responsible consumption and production (SDG 12) , Action for climate (SDG 13), life below water (SDG 14) and life on land (SDG 15).

With a large coalition of organic associations, including IFOAM, Naturland (Germany), Organic Sweden, Pro Luomu (Finland), Organic Denmark, Bio Austria, Bioforum Vlaanderen and Wallonie, Irish Organic Board, Bionext, Assobio (Italy), Ecovia ( Spain ) Oikos (Norway) and many organizations in the USA, Canada and Malaysia, Eosta will not only promote the results, but also make them available to anyone in the organic sector who wants to help share the positive and proactive history of organic farming.

About Eosta

Eosta – with Nature & More as a consumer brand – was established in 1990 and over the past 29 years has become one of Europe’s leading distributors of organic fruit and vegetables. The company is known for its sustainability campaigns such as The True Cost of Food, Natural Branding, Dr. Goodfood and Save Our Soils. In 2018, the company won the King Willem I plaque for sustainable entrepreneurship and the European Business Prize for the Environment. See www.eosta.com and www.natureandmore.com.

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