ARCHIVE: Organic farming: Information for consumers
In this section we have brought together information of particular interest to consumers:
- Environmental benefits of organic food and farming
- Sustainability benefits of organic food and farming
- Information about pesticides
- Nutrition and organic food
- Frequently asked questions about organic food and farming
If you have any comments or queries on this part of the Defra website please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information can be found on our research pages here under the 'Current and Completed Projects' area.
During a Defra Seminar on Public Procurement held on March 5th 2003 (PDF 40 KB), the following three headline indicators on how organic production delivered sustainability benefits were discussed:
- Supporting Local and Regional Economies
Here organic food has a clear role to play - organic food providers tend to be Small or Medium Enterprises (SME's)
- Resource Efficiency (particularly Energy Use)
Organic food scores well here - a study funded by Defra has showed that in arable production, organic farming used 35% less energy per unit of production, in dairying 74% less energy.
- Reducing waste (particularly packaging)
Again organic production scores well herewith a reduction of farm wastes because of lower use of external inputs.
- Further details on sustainable procurement can be found here.
The Pesticides Safety Directorate are the UK's official body who administer regulation of agricultural, horticultural, forestry, food storage and home use of pesticides. The Pesticides Safety Directorate website contains much useful information.
You may also like to see the Pesticides Action Network UK website (PAN UK – formerly the Pesticides Trust - an independent body working to eliminate the hazards of pesticides).
An alternative view of pesticides is offered by the Pesticides Action Network UK, an organisation who promote healthy, food agriculture and the environment.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has considered the subject of the nutritional value of organic food. The Agency's view of organic food can be found by searching for the word 'organic' on their website at www.food.gov.uk
Further information is available on our Help page about downloading or reading Adobe Acrobat documents.
Page last modified: 11 August 2008
Page published: 1 July 2006