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Achieving Sustainable Development Goals through Organic Agriculture

by Leo Frühschütz (comments: 0)

Ecologically farmed field. Symbolbild © Shutterstock/nomadkate

Organic agriculture significantly contributes to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals. This was the result of a Dutch study.

The study was commissioned by the organic distributor Eosta. By reviewing more than 50 scientific studies, including several studies by the United Nations (UN), the author shows the contribution of organic agriculture to achieving eight of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These include climate protection, biodiversity protection, overcoming hunger and clean water for all.

The study observes how organic agriculture contributes to offsetting the negative impacts of conventional agriculture for each of the eight SDGs. The study further examines the extent to which organic farming supports the achievement of the SDGs through its own positive effects. The study points out that “12 out of 15 literature reviews and meta-analyses (are) showing evidence that organic is actually more nutritious”. And this is without requiring pesticides. This is an important point, as “the United Nations estimates that pesticides are responsible for an estimated 200,000 acute poisoning deaths annually “.

Beyond “organic”

In the German edition of the study, an additional chapter is added where Karl von Koerber and Maike Cartsburg from the Munich working group on sustainable nutrition examine the effects of sustainable diets beyond organic” have on the SDGs. Examples for sustainable diets are the consumption of plant-based and minimally processed foods, purchasing regional and seasonal food, or food from fair trade. The authors conclude that sustainable diets can improve living and environmental conditions worldwide and thereby contribute to more global justice, peacekeeping and the establishment of global partnerships. Some best-practice examples from German eco-businesses round off the report.

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