Why Choose Organic?

Thursday 18th January 2018

No one knows or cares more about organic veg than Riverford. We’ve been growing and delivering veg boxes from our Devon farm for 30 years, never using artificial chemicals, and looking after the wildlife, soil and water sources on our land.

Here are just a few of the reasons why we choose 100% organic every time – and why you should join us in 2018.

Protecting farmers’ health
As a young man spraying crops, Riverford founder Guy Watson (twice BBC Farmer of the Year) frequently suffered with headaches and nausea, while his brother was hospitalised with poisoning. Many of the pesticides Guy handled in the 70s and 80s have now been banned, which makes us wonder ‘which of the chemicals that are currently used and called ‘safe’ might be found to possibly damage human health in the future?’ Some are already known to be potentially dangerous. For example, Glyphosate has been labelled a ‘human carcinogen’ by the World Health Organisation – and yet it is still the most widely used weed‐killer in the world.

Saving British wildlife…
Pesticides don’t just target the pests that nibble on crops, many can affect other wildlife and the environment by direct poisoning, contaminating water supplies, or disrupting ecosystems. 75% of UK butterfly species have declined in the past decade and eight of our
25 bumblebee species are threatened, with two already extinct. There is growing scientific evidence that this is linked to certain non‐organic pesticides.

… And the planet
Agriculture plays a big part in climate change and is responsible for around 14% of total green‐house gas emissions worldwide. If all the cultivated land in the UK was farmed organically, we could save 64 million tonnes of carbon over 20 years – the same as taking nearly a million cars off the road.

Outstanding animal welfare
According to Compassion in World Farming, organic farming “provides the highest potential standards of animal welfare” of any farming system – including free range.

We believe it’s better for you
Recent research has proven that as well as being free from nasty chemical surprises, organic food is actually more nutritious. Organic crops contain up to 60% more antioxidants than non‐organic. That means switching to organic produce could give the same benefits as adding one or two portions to the recommended 5‐a‐day.

Live life on the veg!
Feeling inspired to refresh your diet and go organic in the New Year? Smoothies are a great place to start: colourful culinary creations, good veg box user‐uppers, and a tasty shortcut towards your 5‐a‐day.
As well as the freshest seasonal fruit and veg, you’ll need a liquid medium to blend them into – which is where Yeo Valley yogurt comes in! It’s an organic match made in heaven.

If you fancy giving a couple of our favourite smoothie recipes a go, you can find an Apple and Berry Crumble Smoothie here and an Avocado, Spinach and Pear Smoothie here.

References
All organic facts from the Soil Association: www.soilassociation.org

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