What is Organic Farming?
Organic Farming deﬁnes a practice of cultivation in a comprehensive and philosophical method which is an ecologically balanced practice to preserve the environment and it's biological state. Organic Farming puts aside harmful chemical/synthetic pesticides, fertilizers, hormones and antibiotics that are usually used to increase the yield and reduce cost and labor. Instead, alternate methods like use of naturally produced manure, pesticides and practices like crop rotation and mechanical cultivation. These protect soil from nutrient depletion, erosion, and structural breakdown.
Organic Farming combine knowledge of ecology and the recent advanced technology with the traditional farming methods as per their natural occurrence and biological processes. These work in harmony with nature, rather than turning against it. Agroecology is the ﬁeld of science that studies the methods of Organic Farming.
Organic Farming involves various methods that are used to produce safe and healthy crops using natural sources and traditional practices. Most widely talked about are:
Crop rotation means that removing a particular crop from an area where it was previously grown, as it has taken the required minerals from the soil.
This is an organic matter which is produced from remains of plants, animals which get rotten by bacteria over some time. Composting reduces erosion of soil and has the ability to retain water for longer time.
In this method, the ground is covered with a layer of loose material like compost, straw, manure, leaves, grass or residue of crops. Any green vegetation is not used in Mulching as that may take some time to decompose and might attract pests and fungal diseases.
Mulching prevents loss of water from evaporation by covering ground and prevents light from reaching to soil, hence, reduces the growth of weeds.
Global vision on Organic Farming
It is reported that around 86 million acres of land are cultivated organically with 104 million producers working over them
International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movement (IFOAM) formed in the year 1972 represents organic farming practices across the globe and performs research for development. This is the major policy and law making organization which is active in 100 countries with 690 member organizations.
India’s Vision on Organic Farming
Organic farming can be said to be native of this land. The farmers of this Indian subcontinent are farmers of 40 centuries and only organic farming practices have sustained them for this long.
In India, the framework for organic farming is deﬁned and regulated by National Programme on Organic Production(NPOP). In the year 2009, India had 22.7 million acres of certiﬁed organic farmland. Out of this 19.7 million acres was forest land for wild collection. Only 3 million acres was cultivable land.