How Does Organic Farming Impact The Economy?
When you go to the organic food market, you probably think that you’re doing something nice for yourself and your family. You’re buying healthier food, with fewer preservatives and less exposure to pesticides. Maybe you thought about how you’re helping a small farmer or vendor out with your business, but did you ever stop to think about the larger economic effects of organic food?
It turns out, those effects can actually be quite far-reaching. At Organic Restaurants, we took a look at how buying organic food can actually benefit the economy as a whole. If you decide to buy organic, this is how you’re contributing to the greater good.
Money Goes Into Your Local Economy
The great thing about buying organic is that the money you spend goes right back into your local economy. Conventionally grown produce might be grown at a factory farm located far outside your town or city. They have to be shipped in, creating more emissions. So buying organic food is actually green in more ways than one.
This also doesn’t just apply to the farmers in your community. They might be selling their produce to other people and businesses. A vendor at the farmers market might be making pies with organic apples from a local farm. Someone could use those same apples to make cider and sell that. There are so many ways for other people to use that organic produce and contribute to the local economy.
Farm Incomes Rise
When organic food becomes more popular, farm incomes begin to rise. This can be a major factor in whether or not some small farms survive. Being able to grow and sell organic produce that local customers want can make a huge difference for farms of all sizes. They have a ready and willing base of local customers and don’t have to spend a lot of money to transport their product far away to somewhere it will actually sell.
New Jobs and Businesses Are Created
The rising popularity of organic food can also help other types of businesses grow and thrive. This creates jobs. Think of all the organic food brands you’ve seen pop up in recent years. These organic food processors need employees. When you buy organic, you’re helping businesses like these grow and employ more people.
County Poverty Rates Can Drop
This might be the most surprising finding. In places where there is a thriving organic food industry, poverty rates can actually drop! One study showed a 1.3 percent drop in poverty rates and a $2,000 increase in median household income.
While this may not seem like a huge difference, think of it as an added bonus. You’re eating healthier food, putting more money into the local economy, helping new businesses, and on top of all that the poverty rate in your county could drop. That’s pretty incredible.
For More Organic Food News
If you’re interested in learning more about organic foods, healthy options near you, and how eating well has more benefits than you might have guessed, visit the Organic Restaurants website. We’re updating with new tips and tricks all the time.