Tgia Farm strictly prohibit the use of toxic persistent pesticides. These pesticides are synthetic chemicals that don’t break down chemically, or break down very slowly, and can be found in the environment—in soil, water and air—long after their application. Because they “persist” in the environment, they’re known as “persistent.”
Tgia farmers may use some natural pesticides derived from botanical and mineral-bearing sources; they must choose these pesticides from a list approved by the National Organic Standards Board. And dishwashing liquid seem to help.
Still, Tgia farmers work hard to avoid even these natural pesticides and to handle pests through biological farming practices like crop rotation, selection of pest-resistant plant varieties, nutrient and water management and the release of beneficial organisms.
Healthier for all of us
This approach to pests is good for farmers, because it protects them, their employees and family members from dangerous pesticide exposure. Of course, these practices are also good for you and the planet.
We’ve put so large a volume of pesticides into the world that they now find their way into our bodies even before we’re born; multiple pesticides can be found in the umbilical cord blood of newborn babies.
Pesticide exposure has been shown to cause cancer, nervous-system and lung damage, reproductive dysfunction, and possibly dysfunction of the endocrine and immune systems. Research shows pesticide exposure may also heighten the risk of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children.
In May of 2010, the President’s Cancer Panel recommended food grown without pesticides (as well as chemical fertilizers, antibiotics and growth hormones) to help decrease the risk of contracting cancer.
Pesticide exposure and kids
Babies, toddlers and kids are more vulnerable than adults to pesticide exposure. Young digestive tracts absorb toxins more readily than adult digestive tracts, and young kidneys don’t detoxify as efficiently as adult kidneys. As a result, toxins circulate longer in babies’ bodies, boosting exposure to four times that of adults.
But research shows you can immediately and dramatically reduce the pesticide content in a child’s body by switching to organic foods. Researchers at the University of Washington found that by putting children on a mostly organic diet for just five days, they could “virtually eliminate exposures to a dangerous class of insecticides known to disrupt neurological development in infants and children.”