I’m not a certified organic grower and I’m no expert in organics. I understand that there are some good arguments in favor of organic certification. It just doesn’t feel right to me.
While I wish I created more opportunities for meaningful connections with my customers, those meaningful connections are what I truly desire. I really want to be understood. I want my customer to know that my number one priority is creating a farming system and adopting practices that regenerate the life and mineral content in the piece of land that I grow their food on.
In my mind and according to more and more science there is no way to produce food that is truly nourishing with the use of synthetic chemicals
In the same way that the biotic community in our digestive systems are one of the overall indicators of our systemic function, the life in the soil is one of the overall indicators of a plant’s systemic function.
To see why this is true imagine a human being with a sterile digestive system. If the bacteria were not present, we would struggle to digest food. There are between 4-10 times more bacteria in our bodies than there are human cells and most of them are in our digestive system. This means that in our entirety, we are more non-human than human. This isn’t a mistake. The bacteria are there for a purpose and more and more doctors and scientists are proving that they are indispensable.
Similarly, there are more than one billion bacteria present in a single gram of soil. One billion bacteria cannot be a mistake. They are there on purpose. And their purpose is to “digest” the nutrients in the soil and make them available to the plants that need them. In the same way that a human digestive tract uses non-human organism to digest food, the “stomach” of the plant is made up of non-plant organisms.
Protecting the rhizosphere – the complex of life in the soil – is my number one priority because I understand that doing so is the only way for me to produce food that will be the medicine my mind, body and spirit need to resist the stress of the modern age. More than ever we are bombarded by physical, chemical, and emotional stress. In order for my body to create the building blocks essential to resist, process and restore from this stress, I need the very best raw materials. And the very best raw materials come from food that was produced on soil absolutely teeming with life.
Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, was never patented as an herbicide. It was patented as an antibiotic. The plant’s digestive system is literally the biotic community in the soil. Spraying an antibiotic on a biotic community will kill that community.
When the life in the soil is gone, plants can’t properly digest their food. Their immune function goes down so they can no longer resist pests and disease. They get sick. The need to get their nutrients another way if their “stomach” isn’t working. So chemical fertilizers are introduced. Chemical fertilizers are a type of IV treatment for plants. Chemical fertilizers bypass the digestive system of the plant and go directly into the “bloodstream”. The plants stay alive, and they even grow, but they certainly do not thrive.
On the other hand, soil that has maximized its carrying capacity for biology will create an environment extremely beneficial to the production of healthy plants. If the minerals in the soil are being cycled by a rich rhizosphere, they are available in abundance to the growing plants. Minerals available in abundance for plants creates plants that resist disease and pests. These plants are then afforded the maximal opportunity to express their genetic potential.
When we eat food that has fully expressed it’s genetic potential we are more able to express our own.
So for now, I’m not certified organic. I just figure that as we get to know one another you will realize that this mission – stewarding the soil and growing produce that is up to the task of fueling our complex lives – is in my heart. It isn’t a marketing ploy, it isn’t lip service, it isn’t a hollow declaration. It’s what I’m dedicating my life to. And I want you to join me, so that you can give this opportunity to your family as well.