ORGANIC BY DEFAULT 0
Organic farming is either really expensive or really cheap, depending on where you live and whether or not they are certified. In India the natural or organic pesticides and fertilizers are as costly or costlier than their chemical counterparts. For any farmer proving you are an organic farmer requires certification, which is time consuming and expensive and that’s where the problems arises.
Many Indian farmers are still practicing organic methods, passed down for generations. Organic fertilizer and natural pest control methods are the only tools available to most of these farmers, who have always lacked the financial resources to explore chemical solutions. But these farmers, whose produce is as organic as they come, cannot afford to pay the fees required to gain official certification.
Also farmers from tribal and hilly areas have practically no access to chemical fertilizers because of their difficult to reach locations.
65% of the country’s cropped area is “organic by default,” according to a study by Rabo India. By this they mean that small farmers, located mostly in the Eastern and North-Eastern regions of the country, have no choice except to farm without chemical fertilisers or pesticides. Though this is true in many cases, it is also true that a significant number of them have chosen to farm organically, as they are aware of the ill effects of chemicals in the long run.
In a survey India ranks 1st in the largest number of organic producers in the world (2020). Yet in the same survey India comes in the 8th place in terms of World's Organic Agricultural land. Now one would think, Why the contrast? Basically, most of India’s organic farms are not officially certified as organic. Most of them are “organic by default.”
In 2019-20, according to Government statistics, from a total food production of over 291.95 million tonnes, the country produced only 2.75 million MT of organic food products. This statistical discrepancy reveals that the weak link in the organic/economic chain is certification. Under current government policy, it takes four years for a farm to be certified as organic. The cost of preparing the report is a flat fee of around Rs. 20000, and the certificate itself costs another Rs. 30000. While these costs are bearable for the new industrial organic greenhouses, they are equal to or more than an entire year’s income for the average small farmer, if the costs of travel and inspection are included.
The basic solution to help out these farmers is "Community certification". In community certification, communities, on a non-profit basis, take charge of the certification process themselves. They evaluate the farmer’s commitment to the stewardship of the soil, and examine from many angles whether the food is being grown in an environmentally sensitive way or not, rather than technical standards.
But this solution is viable only at the local level. It is not enough to meet the international standards. For a more permanent solution the
government should subsidise the cost of such certifications enough to make it easily affordable to the small farmers while keeping quality process strict. Strict guidelines combined with affordable certification cost will benefit the farmers and the consumers equally.
India is the major producer, consumer and exporter of spices in the world. India grows over 60 different varieties of spices because of varied agro-climatic conditions and soil types. India produces about 60 Lakh MT of spices, of which, about 6.9 Lakh MT (11%) is exported to more than 150 countries.
India is know as the land of spices and that’s why we at Earthon started our journey by collaborating with small farmers to procure the best quality spices. Earthon closely works with farmers in Karnataka who cultivate their farms using organic techniques and never use chemicals and harmful fertilisers. Our farmers convert their farmlands into Organic by following Vermicast process, i.e. using organic/natural fertiliser that is created by using composting earthworms.
Earthon ensures the farmers get their dues by converting their farmlands into Organic and not using harmful chemicals that eventually destroy our ecosystem.
Earthon’s organic spices are one of best in the industry preferred by Chefs and many households for its strong flavours and lovely aroma. Buy Earthon’s organic spices and other staples and support the small farmers around the country.
In one the Hindu newspaper’s annual environmental report, P.V. Satheesh, Director of the Deccan Development Society, writes, “It’s a sobering thought that the farmers producing the best and cleanest food must pay extra to certify, instead of inorganic foods being certified as potentially bad for our health.” Let us hope that we achieve this some day.
What is Red Poha(Flattened) Rice 0
Red Poha/Flattened Rice/Rice Flakes is the one of the most versatile grain available.
It is made by first cleaning the paddy and then grading it to remove impurities. It is then soaked in hot water for 45 minutes. After drying, it is roasted to make flakes. These flakes are passed through sieves to remove unwanted materials and to obtain flakes of fairly even size. Finally, they are packed.
It can be used to prepare snacks or easy fast food by adding vegetables, spices and/or nuts. It can be made into sweet or savoury breakfast options or even into nutritious balls.
It does not contain any cholesterol and trans fat and is packed with iron.
Eating red poha regularly can prevent iron deficiency or anaemia as it contains 20 mg of iron in every 100g raw rice flakes.
Children as well as pregnant and lactating women can benefit greatly by consuming it. Softened poha is also a great way to add dietary iron when an infant is weaned from mother's milk. Sufficient iron helps the body to form hemoglobin that carries oxygen to body cells and also builds immunity.
Here are few reasons why your body needs iron:
A Complete Meal:
Mixed vegetables can be added to rice flakes to make it rich in vitamins, minerals and fibre. Add sprouts, soya nuggets, peanuts and even boiled eggs to make a well-balanced and high-protein meal. Poha also makes a tasty and healthy packed lunch for toddlers as well as office goers.
A Good Source of Carbs:
Carbohydrates are the major source of energy in a bowl of poha. This makes it a perfect breakfast option. It can be eaten for snack too in the place of unhealthy options such as chips and biscuits. Carbohydrates are needed to help our body store energy, and perform various other functions. But getting your carb intake from healthy sources is vital and poha is one healthy source. Try this fibre-rich carbohydrate diet to prevent diabetes.
These days, many are cutting down on food grains like wheat and barley even if they aren't sensitive to gluten.
One can opt for poha as it is gluten free. Individuals who have celiac symptoms should consult their doctor if they can eat poha without causing bloating or stomach pain.
Good for Diabetics:
Poha is considered to be a great meal option for diabetics as it promotes slow release of sugar into the bloodstream. It also keeps you full for longer time. A single serving is enough to keep you going without hunger pangs and reach for unhealthy sweets and junk food.
To avoid monotony, make it by incorporating many different ingredients.
Given below is the calorie count in 1 bowl of poha:
Spiced Poha- 222 Kcal
Vegetable Poha- 244 Kcal
Peanut Poha- 589 Kcal
Why should I buy Organic Food 0
Organic food is the food derived from animals and plants that have been grown and raised in accordance with the strict guidelines associated with government’s agriculture department definition of the term, Organic. In order to be certified as an organic food, food must be grown without the use of products such as manufactured fertilizers, synthetic or man-made pesticides, additives that control or modify growth, antibodies, and/or and livestock feed containing additives.
Back in the 1950-1960’s, life was changing. Women were beginning to work outside the home and the trend then was convenience. Processed foods meant a good meal could be delivered to the table in a fraction of the time. The market for frozen and processed foods literally took off in the year to come.
Organic food was definitely not something that most people gave much attention to or cared about. A quick visit to the supermarket could now provide a family with enough food for several days and that’s how life continued, fueled by the need for speed and convenience.
Lately, people’s feelings towards the food they eat are changing once again. This time, the change is being fueled by the feeling that people no longer know what they’re putting into their bodies. Time and again we hear the news about E. coli outbreaks, genetic food engineering, the potential dangers of eating foods that are shot up with growth hormones to make them bigger and better, and other frightening information. Tired of feeling out of control, eating organic has become chic and has definitely become the latest trend in eating among people from all levels of society.
True organic food is more expensive than non-organic food, but the trade-offs are well worth the additional cost. Not only is organic food better for those who consume it, the people who eat organic foods claim these foods actually taste better than those grown and raised without this strict definition. In fact, eating organic is the best way and really is the only way to feel 100% confident about the foods that are consumed.
Today, farmers are changing the way they grow their foods to take advantage of this increased demand for organic produce. Unfortunately for produce growers, it can take up to 3-4 full years for the land to cleanse itself of the synthetic pesticides and fertilizers that have been applied during all the years prior to growing organic. But the wait is a worthwhile trade-off as well.
So sit back and think what food are you feeding your family and kids, is it GMO, Manufactured Fertilizers, Synthetic Chemicals free ?
- Sujata Gaonkar
- Tags: Organic Food
Lets spill the beans... 0
Eating beans, lentils and other legumes may help you cut down on LDL "bad" cholesterol and lower your risk for heart disease, a new review suggests.
- Sujata Gaonkar
- Tags: Organic Food