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Green living expert, author, and TV personality, Sara Snow, explains the USDA organic seal and why "natural" is not organic.

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  • Did You Know?
    Three new studies confirm that exposures to common insecticides during pregnancy can cut a child’s IQ 4% to 7%  by age 9.
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Hot Science

Organic reduces emergence of antimicrobial-resistance in poultry

Mar 24, 2017

Another study shows the benefits of organic production when it comes to controlling antibiotic- resistant bacteria. Research conducted at Ohio State University examined antibiotic resistance in Campylobacter on organic and conventional poultry farms. While both systems had Campylobacter with genes that could confer antibiotic resistance, tests showed fewer Campylobacter with antimicrobial resistance on organic farms […]

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World Health Organization data confirm pesticides’ negative health impacts

Mar 21, 2017

A new study based on data from the World Health Organization (WHO) confirms the link between pesticide exposure and negative health effects. Researchers looked at insecticide, fungicide, herbicide and other pesticide sales based on tons of active ingredients, and compared them to quality of life variables—annual lung cancer cases, asthma cases, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease […]

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Conservation ag increases beneficial biodiversity, supports weed control

Mar 18, 2017

A recent study published in Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment demonstrates that conservation management of farms increases the abundance of carabid beetles that consume the seeds of weeds in crop fields.  Researchers examined 67 fields in California.  They determined whether or not conservation agriculture practices were in place, and analyzed whether the amount of time in […]

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Rheumatoid arthritis in women associated with pesticide exposure

Mar 15, 2017

A study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives has now examined the possible association between rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and exposure to pesticides and other farm chemicals. The findings have come from The Agricultural Health Study, a long-term study examining the health of farm workers and their families in Iowa and North Carolina. RA is […]

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What the latest research actually says (and doesn’t) about organic

Mar 14, 2017

Precise analysis of scientific articles isn’t always easy and almost never quick.  Today’s media has much to report on and respond to, and increasingly, corners get cut in taking the time to get the news out in the most accurate way. A new journal article published in Science Advances highlights many areas where organic agriculture […]

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Beneficial birds more abundant and diverse on organic farms

Mar 10, 2017

A study from Japan confirms that bird diversity is greater on organic versus conventional farms.  The study fills a gap in our knowledge about the impacts of perennial organic systems, such as orchards, in preserving biodiversity. Many studies have shown that annual organic farming systems are beneficial for a wide range of plants and animals, […]

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Study estimates the costs of pesticide use at $15 billion

Mar 07, 2017

Opponents to organic often cite the benefits of pesticide use, such as controlling pests and increasing yields.  However, economic models rarely incorporate hidden and external costs of pesticide use on human health and environmental consequences. A study published in Sustainable Agriculture Reviews estimates the costs of these negative impacts. In this study, researchers analyzed 61 […]

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Fertilizer use and the environmental cost of a loaf of bread

Mar 06, 2017

A new study published in the journal Nature Plants analyzed the environmental impact of the complete supply chain for producing a loaf of bread. The study found that more than half of the total environmental impact occurred during wheat cultivation. Moreover, the use of ammonium nitrate fertilizer on wheat crops was responsible for the majority […]

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Organic rice paddies use less energy

Mar 01, 2017

A recent study published in the Journal of Environmental Management assessed energy usage and yields for organic and conventional rice production systems in the Piemonte region of Italy and in Missouri. Researchers collected data on both direct and indirect energy usage for 12 farms. Direct measures of energy use included the amount of fuel and […]

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Pesticide cocktails have synergistic negative impacts on human health

Feb 24, 2017

Unfortunately, we rarely are exposed to a single pesticide residue at a time. Most products are sprayed with a cocktail of chemicals, and, according to new research, these cocktails can often have a synergistic negative effect on human health, where the sum of the adverse effects is greater than the additive effects of the individual […]

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