Organic TV

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

Microbial communities in organic soils suppress pathogens

Mar 17, 2015

Organic soils support much higher levels of biodiversity than conventional soils. It has been hypothesized that this abundance of ‘good’ soil organisms works to suppress soil pathogens such as fungi or bacteria that attack plant roots. A recent study published in the journal Applied Soil Ecology tested to see whether the soil pathogen flax wilt […]

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Exposure to very low levels of neonicotinoids negatively affects bumblebee brains

Mar 13, 2015

A recent study published in the journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology has found further support that exposure to very low levels of neonicotinoid pesticides, comparable to what is found in nectar and pollen from neonicotinoid-treated crops, is sufficient to harm bees. Researchers carried out a combination of laboratory and field […]

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Effects of pre- and post-natal exposure to flame retardants in children

Mar 10, 2015

  Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are flame retardants that were commonly used to treat household items such as furniture and infant products. In 2004, they were banned from use in household items because of their actions as human endocrine disruptors. Unfortunately, people are still frequently exposed to PBDEs by way of dust in homes that […]

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Early organophosphate exposure linked to respiratory illness in children

Mar 03, 2015

Organophosphates are one of the most commonly used pesticides in the world. Although they are now restricted for residential use due to human toxicity, they are still widely used in agriculture. A recent study published in Environmental Health Perspectives has found a slight association between early exposure to organophosphate pesticides and respiratory symptoms consistent with […]

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Farming method more important for farm biodiversity than landscape

Feb 25, 2015

A recent study published in the journal Landscape Ecology has found that using organic methods is more important in determining the amount of beneficial predator insects on farms than having diverse landscapes. Scientists compared the effects of landscape composition, habitat quality related to organic and conventional farming, and other characteristics such as hedgerows to determine […]

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Antibiotics and antibiotic-resistant bacteria air-borne from feedlots

Feb 19, 2015

The rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria is commonly attributed to the overuse of antibiotics in livestock. Antibiotics are fed to livestock at low levels on a regular basis to enhance growth. They then enter the environment via animal urine, which eventually makes its way through soils and into waterways. Once antibiotics are present in the environment, […]

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Farm workers become ill after exposure to newly marketed pesticides

Feb 17, 2015

A recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report published by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) documents the poisoning of farm workers in the state of Washington after accidental exposure to new pesticides from off-target drift. Twenty people were working in a cherry orchard when they were exposed to pesticides being sprayed in a nearby pear […]

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Neonicotinoid pesticides and parasites together negatively affect bumble bees

Feb 11, 2015

As bee populations decline, scientists are directing their research to understand what factors are negatively affecting bee health and what can be done to help them. Because of the large role that the European domestic honey bee plays in crop pollination, particularly on expansive farms, the majority of research has been focused on managed colonies. […]

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Eating organic reduces pesticide exposure

Feb 05, 2015

A recent study published in Environmental Health Perspectives has confirmed that choosing organic does, in fact, reduce consumer exposure to pesticides. The study aimed to (1) estimate long-term dietary exposure to organophosphate pesticide residues for individuals, (2) check the accuracy of the estimates and (3) determine whether choosing organic fruits and vegetables lowered pesticide exposure. […]

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Prenatal exposure to phthalates linked to lowered IQ in children

Feb 05, 2015

A recent study published in the Journal PLOS ONE has found an association between maternal exposure to phthalates—chemicals commonly found in plastics and personal care products—and lowered IQ in their seven-year-old children. Previous studies had found that phthalate exposure in pregnant women has negative effects on their children. For instance, prenatal phthalate exposure was associated […]

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