Let’s trust organic matter nourishing plants, instead of an organic certification.

livingearthsystems blog, Uncategorized 0 Comments

If an “organic” farm doesn’t have a composting system, it’s a clear indication that they’re probably not using compost in their program, or building their soil through living organic material.

Composting is to incorporate organic matter into the soil and to have an abundance of beneficial microbes, fungi, and symbiotic creatures. It is a true form of organic fertilizer – organic material broken down by creatures for plants to eat.

Trusting the organic certification of a farm or product (while much better than conventional farming) is just not good enough. Many times it is misleading to the consumer and simply hiding bad farming practices. Many times, amazing farmers that are doing great work can’t afford to get organic certification.

Let’s trust organic matter nourishing plants, instead of an organic certification.Click to Tweet

Farms that don’t use compost are most likely using some sort of pelletized form of fertilizer, or a liquified version as fertigation (fertilizer applied via irrigation). A lot of certified organic farms fertilize with bone meal, blood meal, feather meal, and fish emulsion that come from more than questionable, non-organic meat factories (that have incredibly inhumane practices and are fed GMO feed), or that are made from fish parts (that rarely come from sustainable fisheries).

Having visited many certified organic farms over the years we think the very basic rule of thumb is if they’re not making compost on site, or bringing it in from a credible source, then you probably don’t want to be supporting them. As consumers we have the power of swaying production with our dollar. So GET TO KNOW YOUR FARMER! Support farms that build soil. Visit the farms in your area and ask questions. Your best tool is observation of your farmer.

Ask the farmer:


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    Are you composting or using compost?

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    Do you use herbicides, pesticides, or fertilizers?

    Many of the same pesticides and pest management practices used in conventional farming are also allowed to be used in certified organic farming. You don’t necessarily want these in your body or in our soils.

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    Do you have other creatures present in your systems that are in symbiosis with the plants?

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    Are you feeding the soil?

    or are you just feeding the plants?

Ask yourself:


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    Does the farm look lush?

    or does it look desolate?

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    Does the soil look dark and rich?

    or does it look dusty and infertile?

Beyond knowing that what you’re buying is what you want to be voting with your dollar on, knowing where your food comes from builds an important connection with your local space, and builds the important connection, and sense of security, of actually knowing your neighbors.

Ultimately, the most important elements for being safe, secure, and resilient in uncertain times is through building strong relationships with the humans in your community, and building topsoil teeming with life.

So what about you – where do you get your food from? Do you know of any good farmers in your area?

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