Organic farming and the Transition to sustainable development

Benjamin, JR Quinones, February 2018

With the rise in recent years of emerging economies in Asia, domestic demand for organic produce also surfaced and grew rapidly across the region. ASEC -Asian Solidarity Economy Council- a leading resource center on social solidarity economy in Asia, based in the Philippines is actively involved in the promotion of organic farming through documentation, awareness raising, and partnership building.

As a result of the massive use of inorganic fertilizer and chemicals for pest and weed control, agriculture combined with deforestation and other land use has become the second largest contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions. A shift in the farming system from inorganic to organic would accomplish a dual slowing impact on climate change. First, by eliminating the use of chemicals, organic farming reduces the amount of gases emitted to the atmosphere. And second, by making intensive use of plants and trees organic farming sequesters more carbon from the atmosphere naturally. While governments have formally recognized the need to curb climate change and have pledged only recently to reduce gas emissions through the Paris Climate Agreement, people throughout the world have been taking voluntary actions for decades now to advance organic farming with the support of such global networks as the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movement (IFOAM), URGENCI, World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO), and RIPESS. In the initial years, adoption of organic farming has been most conspicuous in developed countries where customers have the purchasing power to pay for organic produce at a premium price.

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