Letter: Save our soil, go organic

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The Independent Online
From Mr Edward Goff

Sir: As an organic farmer, I found your leader on organic farming ("An organic but lonely furrow", 17 May) lacking understanding of its raison d'etre.

Organic farming is not just about its products (excellent though they are) but about a system that functions to maintain and preserve wildlife and their habitats; to reduce the demands on the world's energy and mineral resources; to enhance animal welfare; to avoid pollution, particularly by pesticides; and to maintain the long-term fertility of our soils.

The tax-payer pays huge sums as subsidies to farmers to maintain conventional farming practice which, while providing an apparent cornucopia, does so unsustainably and with deleterious effects on our health and environment.

What does it profit us to gain the whole world but to lose our soil?

Yours faithfully,




17 May