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We consume about 1.5 grams of natural pesticides a day which is 10 000 times more than synthetic pesticide residues. -99.9% of pesticides in the environment are natural The body does not distinguish between both; it handles synthetic and natural toxins the same way. We have detoxicating systems. Our liver, our kidneys, our skin can eliminate substances that are potentially dangerous. There’s a fantastic array of chemicals there to which we are exposed and its almost undecipherable to know which are the ones that are problematic. Of course, there’s a whole movement out there for getting rid of pesticides totally and go organic. We cannot produce all of the food that is needed in the world without using agrochemicals People buy organic for three reasons 1.For what it does not contain (pesticide residues): 80% of fresh foods tested are residue-free For processed foods, the residue-free portion is 90% Washing the apple is more to wash off any dirt on it that could harbor bacteria. 2.For what it does contain (perceived to have more nutrients) Is it really more nutritious? Many studies on the nutritional quality of organic foods From a total of 52,471 articles, we identified 162 studies (137 crops and 25 livestock products); 55 were of satisfactory quality. On the basis of a systematic review of studies of satisfactory quality, there is no evidence of a difference in nutrient quality between organically and conventionally produces foodstuffs. The small differences in nutrient content detected are biologically plausible and mostly relate to differences in production methods. Nutrients do not depend on whether or not the crop is grown organically. Nutrients depend on: -Variety type -Soil quality -Fertilizers -Crop rotations
CHEM 181 Winter 2019 Malka A-r 120 -Maturity at harvest -Sun -Rain -Transportation 3.Environmental benefits Is organic more environmentally friendly? Yep. The fewer synthetic pesticides and fertilizers we put out there, the less will get washed down to rivers, lakes, et cetera Soybean Study: - Conventionally frown vs organically grown When soybeans are grown on a large farm, very often you have a problem with infestation with aphids. They start eating the leaves and that reduces the yield and no farmer wants that. There are natural predators that can be used , but its very difficult to do this on a very large scale. In this particular study, the researchers looked at what happens to the aphids in soybean fields if they are treated with organic or conventional pesticides. They measured the “environmental impact quotient” which looks at all of the parameters that we are concerned about when we’re using pesticides.Environmental Impact Quotient: -Dermal toxicity -Fish toxicity -Bird toxicity -Bee toxicity -Toxicity to beneficial -Leaching -Runoff -Soil residue -Plant residue -Chronic health effects Here, there was a case where the organic mineral oil had the poorest record Organic isn’t always better, it must be looked at on a case-per-case basis.
CHEM 181 Winter 2019 Malka A-r 121 We have to remember that there are no safe substances, only safe ways to use substances.