Organic has become sort of a buzzword. Some people think labeling a product organic is just a way to charge a higher price. But organic farming has a real impact, both on the planet and for you.
Conventional cotton farming covers only 2.5% of the world agricultural land but uses 16% of the world's insecticides and 25% of the world's pesticides!
These chemicals cause great harm to the farmers and the environment. This is especially prevalent in developing countries, where cotton is handpicked, greatly increasing the farmers' level of exposure to these deadly chemicals. In addition, the pesticides often contaminate water streams, which is a big problem, as drinking water supplies are rarely monitored. Between 25 to 77 million of cotton farmers worldwide suffer from acute pesticide poisoning each year. But even here in the US, over 10,000 farmers die each year from cancers related to these chemicals.
Furthermore, environmental contamination leads to over 67 million birds in the US dying each year.
Organic cotton is grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. Conventional farmers spend up to 60% of their production costs on pesticides and need to repurchase GMO seeds yearly. The transition to organic farming thus leads to high cost savings and a much healthier work environment for farmers. Consumers also benefit, as organic cotton has been found to be much more gentle on sensitive skin, with fewer allergic reactions. This is due to a lack of residual pesticide content in the final cotton product.