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Bad farm stories…. (organic & not organic)

Bad Farm Stories

Having traveled all around Thailand in search for good organic farming practices I’ve visited certified organic farms where producing vegetables, fruits and herb sold as organic but to my surprise in many cases surrounding farms were using chemical fertilizers, pesticides, fungicides and herbicides from which the organic farm can not be protected (these travel by air/wind to their farms) and there’s no way these chemicals do not end up on the organic farm’s land and produce. When asked farmers explained they put banana trees in between their and the other farm to protect their crop (… who are they kidding…). Of course these Bad Farm Stories made Pura decide not to do business with these farms.

When we visited organic farms we always asked the production quantity per week for a certain product and when we were told for instance they produce about 50 kg of kale per week we actually called them back a few months later to ask them a big favor for an ‘important’ client of us who urgently needed 200 kg of organic kale and quite a few farmers replied ‘no problem’, I mean….. what did they show me when I visited and where do they get the unexpected 200 kg from?

Nothing can be guaranteed of course but these stories help me believe that it is important to do business with those farmers who show diligence, who show they have an organic heart and mind set. Of course the organic certification helps but think the trust between 2 parties is an even more important matter in the world of organic.

I’ve visited farms whose products were for sale in big name supermarkets and when visiting their farm there was no production to be seen due to torrential rains and floods having destroyed all crops. Nevertheless their products with their packaging was for sale in the supermarket, I can only imagine something fishy going on here too.

Residues Pesticide

Conventional farming

We’ve read the various (and annually returning) newspaper articles about chemical residues remaining on non organic vegetables above the health limits set forth in various FDA requirements, even brands which proud themselves with the ‘Q’ label (quality) showed unhealthy levels of pesticide residues remaining on the produce.

Ask any one from the North East of Thailand (Isan) if they know of farming friends or family who had to have their legs or fingers amputated because of the use of excess chemicals.

Who hasn’t heard the story of the farms telling their friend they should not eat their products because of the chemicals used, or farms which set aside a small piece of their farm for crops they want to eat themselves. All terrible to read but apparently…..

How about fish already been soaked in formaldehyde in order to increase the shelf life and looks of the products. That same stuff is used on fresh farmed produce in order to increase shelf life too.

I simply think organic is a perfect option and although not guarantee-able it is surely a better choice!

In the western world the health aspects of conventional (non organic) farmed products does not really have any huge health hazards BUT only for farmed products in Europe, they clearly state that this does not apply to produce imported from Asia…..

Be careful out there!

Martin

 

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