Organic farming promotes control of pests and pathogens

Photo credit: Bernard Spragg

A recent study published in the Journal Nature Sustainability used two different meta-analyses to demonstrate that organic farming promotes overall pest control by supporting beneficial predators. The study also showed that while insect pest and pathogen infestations were similar between conventional and organic farms -- suggesting that the use of synthetic chemicals was no more effective than organic pest control methods, weed pest infestations were higher on organic farms. “This study provides evidence that organic farming can enhance pest control and suggests that organic farming offers a way to reduce the use of synthetic pesticide for the management of animal pests and pathogens without increasing their levels of infestation,” the authors concluded.