Myth: Organic means no pesticides!

Myth: Farmers douse/slather/drench their crops in pesticides.

Myth: Farmers use pesticides as a shortcut – they’re not necessary.

Myth: Conventionally grown food is less nutritious than organically grown food.

Fact:

Thought your organic grapes were going commando, did you? Sure, pesticide-free organic items do exist, but, most organic farms must use some form of pesticide to grow their produce. The difference is organic farmers use crop protection products principally derived from naturally-occurring sources to help them say, bye fly-licia! In fact, there are actually more than 20 synthetic chemicals commonly used on organic crops that are approved by the U.S. National Organic Standards Board. One major difference between organic and conventional pesticide use? The actual volume of pesticides used on an organic farm is not monitored and recorded by the government.

Fact:

If farmers slathered on crop protection like we slather on sunscreen, say at a ratio of half an ounce for the area of your face, farmers would have to use more than 54,000 ounces per acre. In reality, crop protection products are applied sparingly (as low as 3 ounces per acre). Avoiding overuse is as important to farmers as ensuring the soil is rich in nutrients and crops are watered – every application of crop protection is part of the heavy or substantial investment a farmer makes in his or her most valuable possession, the land.

Fact:

With 10,000+ species of insects, 30,000+ species of weeds, and 100,000+ crop diseases caused by fungi, viruses, bacteria and other microorganisms, the struggle is real for crops in the field. Like really real. So farmers use a variety of methods, like integrated pest management (IPM) to keep our salad bars stocked with fresh and zesty produce all year long. And there’s nothing lazy about IPM, which emphasizes long-term pest prevention, targeting problem organisms using a spring mix of biological controls, habitat manipulation, AND pesticides. Pesticides are a necessary tool.

Fact: