As many health organizations ruled out most chemicals as harmful chemicals effect on human health, many people has set their attention on organic farming list of chemicals allowed in organic farming instead. The difference between conventional and organic farming is the use of chemical. In organic farming, chemicals use are not as intensive as conventional one.
Chemical such as pesticide and fertilizers are very common but in organic farming, fruits and vegetables must come unpolluted of any harmful chemicals. This is to minimize side effects that the chemicals may expose to human and other living organisms. However, organic farming does still utilize some chemicals as listed below.
Chemicals Allowed in Organic Farming
Here are the list of chemicals allowed in organic farming:
There are only a handful of chemicals allowed in organic farming. One of them is Pyrethrin. Pyrethrin is organic compound of a Chrysanthemum cinerariifolium derivates. The extract of Pyrethrin is a natural Chrysanthemum flowers.
Why is Pyrethrin useful in organic farming is that in its nature, this chemical has insecticidal tendency to kill bugs and insects. Bugs and insects have been one of severe pest in agriculture. Insecticide use in order to improve flower production and quality is unavoidable. Organic farmers consider Pyrethrin to be an organic insecticide free from synthetic chemical just like banned insecticide in India.
The degradation of soil quality makes it hard for organic farmers to maintain healthy soil. Biofertilizier comes from genus isolated from nodules. This microorganism planted themselves on the root and convert rare nitrogen to be nitrogenous ammonia. Ammonia is a fertilizer well-known for its rich nitrogen that helps to fertilize soil.
All the process is natural and does not require synthetic process. Thus, it is also part of example of organic compound process to fertilize soil without the help of laboratory process.
- Lime Sulphur
Another chemical organic farmers approve of its use is lime sulphur. Lime sulphur is an inorganic compound from natural calcium polysulfides and calcium hydroxide. Even though it is a sulfate agent, it occurs naturally as part of natural reaction.
The use of lime sulphur in organic farming is as effective pesticide. It can kill fungi, bacteria and insect. Its toxicity only works on pest and many assume it will not affect the quality of crops and fruits because it is highly soluble on water. Thus, it is one of chemicals allowed in organic foods and farming.
- Copper (II) Sulfate
Copper (II) Sulfate is one of example of inorganic compounds blue vitriol or blue stone. It has bluish color that occurs naturally from salt derivates. This chemical was once part of medical chemical but was too toxic as a medicine.
However, Copper (II) Sulfate is an effective and relatively safe herbicide. While other herbicides may use synthetically made chemical, this herbicide is safer without any apparent side effects to agricultural products. Organic farmers use Copper (II) Sulfate to get rid of unwanted plants from main crops. Moreover, it also helps to get rid of unwanted organisms such as snail and able to get rid of fungi. This makes Copper (II) Sulfate a chemical allowed in organic farming.
The next chemical in organic farming is Bromomethane. Bromomethane is colorless noninflammable gas that can act as soil sterilant and pesticide in strawberries production. Since it has both synthetic and natural type, the chemical is generally safe only if it follows the right procedure by EPA.
Despite being a weak fungicide, Bromomethane stable result with minimum side effects make it a win-win for strawberry to flourish not only organic enough but also has maintained quality unlike using purely synthetic pesticide. Therefore, it is one of chemicals allowed in organic farming. Therefore, it is in th list of chemicals found in pesticide
Rotenone is colorless isoflavone that often comes in crystalline form. The chemical is a natural product of several plants seed such as jicama seed and any other plants in its class. Therefore, rotenone is an organic compound occurs naturally.
In organic farming, Rotenone acts as pesticide and insecticide. Unlike synthetic pesticide, rotenone is non-selective so it has wider range of target. It also able to function as piscicide to kill fish. However, as it is non-selective, farmers have to be extra careful not to kill organisms that benefit the plan. Generally safe, rotenone is among the exception and make it onto the list of allowed chemicals in organic farming.
- Boric Acid
Boric Acid is among the few chemicals in organic farming. This chemical is a soluble chemical of boron acid derivates. It is generally weak and not toxic since water can washes it down quickly. The acidity of Boric Acid has several functions in industry such as antiseptic, flame retardant, and insecticide.
In organic farming, Boric Acid functions as non-selective insecticide that helps to get rid of any insects that may cause damage to crops, plants, fruits and any green products. Its acidity may come as a bit too strong. However, as the chemical able to dissolve easily on water, it is generally safe to use Boric Acid as insecticide in organic farming.
The last chemical on this list is Azadirachtin. Azadirachtin is limonoid in neem seeds. It is a chemical now recognised as insecticide in organic farming. While it has lesser known popularity than the synthetic counterpart, Azadirachtin use so far has not caused any potential harm to organic products and the consumer.
This compound acts as antifeedant and growth disruptor to more than hundred thousands kinds of insect. Therefore, it is effective to get rid of various insect in crops and plantation. Moreover, it is also soluble to water and is not as toxic as synthetic insecticide. Since the use of chemical is unavoidable even in organic farming, this chemical continue to thrive in terms of its use.
There are eight and more chemicals that are allowed in organic farming. It is a truth that no agricultural industry will not rely on chemical and only use what nature produces. That is because the soil condition makes it hardly possible for any plantation to grow undisturbed and come out in perfect condition.
Therefore, not that even though organic farming still use chemicals, it is still relatively safer than non-organic one. There are, other Chemicals Used in Organic Farming.