Multiple studies have shown that organic farmers use fewer pesticides, restrict the inclusion of food additives and follow practices that benefit the environment. There have also been reports that people with food allergies experience fewer or no symptoms when they eat organic food.
Pesticides, such as insecticides, herbicides and fungicides, are widely used in traditionally grown food. These chemicals are used to protect crops from insects and mold, and some residues remain on the harvested products. Consumers sometimes choose organic crops because farmers control pests with careful crop selection, insect traps and predator insects instead.
Organic products tend to be fresher because regulations heavily restrict or outright ban the use of preservatives, processing aids and fortifying agents. These products tend to be free from monosodium glutamate, artificial colorings, sweeteners and flavorings that are often found in non-organic food. Organic produce is also often sourced from local farms near where it is sold.
Organic farming practices help the environment by reducing soil, water and air pollution. Conserving water, increasing soil fertility and reducing soil erosion are top priorities as well.
Animals raised organically are not given growth hormones and antibiotics or fed animal by-products. These animals have ample space to move around and are allowed to roam outdoors, resulting in healthier animals and higher quality milk, meat, poultry and fish.