Why Food Sustainability Matters
no longer simply choosing foods that are great for your body
Rather, easting healthy means choosing foods that are good for the environment, too. Food should ideally be produced in ways that don’t negatively impact the environment or result in the mistreatment of animals. This combined with practices that pay farmers fair wages, provide a safe and humane working environment for workers, and support the community—is called sustainable agriculture.
Sustainable agriculture is a growing practice vital to the health and welfare of our planet. While modern industrial agriculture is highly productive and can produce a massive amount of food, it also introduces damaging and long-term problems that can only be solved through sustainable practices. Here are four reasons why sustainable farming is a rational solution to our agricultural needs.
1. Decreased Monoculture
Monoculture involves planting huge fields of a single plant breed, making the spread of disease from plant to plant more likely. A single disease can wipe out an entire crop, causing food prices to spike.
2. Improved Land Use
Industrial farming techniques waste space and ruin the landscape, causing other farmers to spend unnecessary amounts of money acquiring their own plots of land. Conversely, sustainable farming places several crops on a single plot of land, which produces more food per acre and allows farmers to free up
more land for preservation purposes.
3. Reduced Pollution
While fertilizers used by industrial farmers can encourage plant growth, they can also lead to polluted runoff water that ruins the natural environment.
Industrial animal farming also produces waste that pollutes nearby waters and is known for producing methane, a potent greenhouse gas that’s harmful to the earth’s atmosphere.
4. Better Animal Welfare
Industrial factory farming is synonymous with poor treatment of animals. Farmers within the industry can save money by packing as many animals as they can into a small space, which creates an inhumane way of life for the livestock. Sustainable agriculture produces a quality of life for animals by mixing a limited number with a plant-based farm, giving livestock space to graze and roam.
Want to contribute to sustainable agriculture? It’s easy! Shopping at your local farmers market is a great way to support earth-friendly farming methods.