December 5, 2018 6:46 am Leave your thoughts
It’s December 5th today, which means it’s World Soil Day. Today, we’re encouraging everyone to think just a little bit more about the soil beneath our feet. And that’s because there’s virtually nothing more important on earth than the earth – the top two inches of it, that is. Soil is the basic support mechanism for our crops, our trees, our wildlife and our farm animals. Dirty, soggy and teeming with life, it truly is the basis of our existence.
Begun 16 years ago, World Soil Day is an annual global celebration of the importance of soil. It’s also a time to think about the challenges facing the world’s soils. Here’s the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on the subject:
‘there is a worldwide increase in degradation of soil resources due to inappropriate management practices, population pressure driving unsustainable intensification and inadequate governance over this essential resource.’
According to the UK’s Soil Association, 40% of all soils in the world are now ‘seriously degraded’. People are over-farming, depleting the soils’ nutrients. Governments are allowing pollutants to reach soils, destroying their natural microsystems. Communities all over the world are failing to cherish this vital, non-renewable resource.
This year, the FAO is begging all of us: Be the solution to soil pollution! But what can you – the customer – do?
Buy organic for healthy soil
Around 95% of the food we eat comes from the soil – so looking at the food we buy and the way it’s grown is an obvious place to start. At Naturally Good Food, we’re firm advocates for a system of farming and eating that promotes the health of soil, rather than depleting it.
In organic farming, synthetic and petroleum-based pesticides and fertilisers are banned. Contamination – both of the soil and of nearby waterways– is thus significantly reduced. Natural organisms are protected, rather than destroyed by ‘scorched-earth’ pesticides. Organic farmers use crop rotation to build fertility in the soil, as well as to break cycles of pests and disease naturally.
Healthy soils draw carbon into them, acting as a carbon sink. According to the Soil Association, if all UK farming converted to the organic system, at least 1.3 million extra tonnes of carbon would be taken up by the soil each year.
As customers, we can play an important role in encouraging this conversion. Buying organic wherever possible makes clear the demand for better food and a better environment.
Naturally Good Food is one of the UK’s leading online retailers of organic food. We’re licensed by the Soil Association to pack our own-brand NGF organic products. We’ve got organic nuts, organic seeds, organic dried fruit, organic grains, organic pulses, organic oils, organic herbs and spices – and organic everything else we can find!
Save your own soil
The Soil Association has five pointers on how to ‘save our soil’ in our everyday life. They’re useful tips for anyone with a garden or an allotment of their own (and particularly suitable for ‘lazy’ gardeners!). Click on the links to see what they suggest:
Soil is one of the most precious things we have on this earth. Let’s protect it together!
Tags: Food and Agriculture Organization, NGF, organic dried fruit, organic farming, Organic food, organic herbs, organic nuts, Organic Oils, organic pulses, organic seeds, organic spices, soil, soil association, UN FAO, World Soil Day
This post was written by Yzanne