Organic September is a month long celebration of everything that is good, great and frankly, glorious about organic across the UK! In this blog we talk about why its important and how you can get involved.
Needless to say, we're excited! It's THE month to get involved and try some organic food & drink for the first time or, expand your selection if you're already an organic buyer.
Why? Well, the biggest driver is more organic consumption = more organic farms.
This is the most important outcome of increasing organic food & drink in the UK. Certified organic farmers do things the old-school way (after all, in the past, wasn't all food & drink organic?), the clean way, some might say the right way. Without the use of nasty, manufactured chemical pollutants to the natural environment.
The more organic farms there are, the less pesticides, fertilisers, antibiotics, hormone use and GMO use there is. It all goes towards protecting the soil, helping it to retain it's nutrients for the plants, for the grass, for the animals that graze. You see, the organic movement is a big, whole-picture endeavour bringing about not just health for our families, but health for soils, farms, and ultimately the whole of the natural eco-system.
If you think of our food production as a giant hopper, what you put in the top comes out at the bottom. So, if that's a tonne of man-made chemicals to help things grow bigger and stronger, yes, you will have a giant apple coming out the bottom but you will also have a giant apple which is pumped full of chemicals on the inside. The alternative is simple, no chemical usage = no chemicals in the end product. No chemical ingestion for us. C L E A N eating.
Richer, denser soils and vegetation means wildlife thrives rather than survives. It has been reported that organic farms have an average increase of 50% wildlife compared to non-organic farms plus 30% more species detected. It also means that the plants that grow or animals that graze are of a higher quality because they are free-range and have access to all the nutrients they need. That leads to greater taste for us humans to enjoy this plus we gain better nutrients along the way.
Did you know that in the UK, over 300 pesticides can routinely be used by non-organic farms? Not only that, research from 2015 showed that during that year, over 17 thousand tonnes of pesticides were used on British farms! No wonder the UK government found that 43% of our food contained pesticide residues.
So here are some tips from the Soil Association on how to clean up your diet and get in on the action this Organic September:
- Wake up to organic - there are lots of local cafes and restaurants signed up to take part - click here. There will often be free sampling and ideas on show so get involved!
- Choose organic cheese - a great way to start eating organic is to select some staples for the change. Organic cheese tastes amazing and you will notice the difference in quality. There may be some offers here.
- Stock up your cupboards on organic - you could switch up your regular tins like baked beans (yes Heinz even do organic!), kidney beans, chopped tomatoes etc. We are sure you will taste the difference using these in your regular weekly meals.
- Buy online - so many places are now selling organic online to reduce their carbon footprint (like us!) and you can often find even better deals.
- Eat what's in season - chefs will always advocate that eating what is perfectly ready and ripe is the best way to bolster flavour. Why not sign up to a fresh fruit or veg box scheme this Organic September?
- Switch to organic milk - there is research to suggest organic milk is higher in omega 3 & 6 than non-organic milk. A simple switch like this could go a long way. Cup of tea?!
- Go organic for your meat - less is more. You don't have to eat a lot of meat to enjoy it. If you do eat meat, why not select some organic cuts? Our friends over at the Well Hung Meat Company can help you out.
- Go Organic for some of your beauty/health products - you'll be amazed how much is now out there from shampoos and body wash through to make-up and deodorants.
- Go to your local supermarket or shop - even your local big brand supermarket will stock more locally produced organics. There is increasingly a wide range and if not, check out your independent shops for more artisan goodies.
- Try organic alcohol (in moderation!) - there are an amazing selection of (often locally produced) organic lagers, ales, ciders and wines out there. Enjoy a slightly less guilty tipple knowing they are cleaner and you're giving back to the organic movement.
We wrote a blog post a while back about our own top 10 reasons to #GoOrganic which you can check out here. We are confident that once you try organic, you won't look back because of the feeling it gives you to know you are consuming the best quality at the same time as giving back to farmers & the natural world. It's a win win. Happy hunting fitfam and let us know about your organic discoveries this month :)