Organic Performs Better in Majority of Sustainability Aspects

Organic Performs Better in Majority of Sustainability Aspects

Volkert Engelsman: “Research confirms validity and importance of Nature & More approach”

Wageningen University & Research Centre, a Dutch scientific institute, has investigated the integral sustainability achievements of organic agriculture. The results were published on December 7, 2011 in the report “Perspectief op duurzaamheid” (“An outlook on sustainability”). The report shows how organic agriculture performs better in a majority of cases, but worse in some. Sustainability goals sometimes conflict. According to IFOAM World Board Member and Eosta founder Volkert Engelsman, the study illustrates the need for a workable integral sustainability model such as Nature & More.

The report discusses seven aspects of social, ecological and economical sustainability and concludes that innovation is necessary, to rise above paradoxes. “Only integral sustainability is true sustainability,” says research coordinator Frank Wijnands. IFOAM World Board member and entrepreneur Volkert Engelsman welcomes the results. As the founder of Nature & More, the leading organic transparency trademark in Europe, he has been battling for an integral sustainability approach for years. Engelsman: “The results of the study show us that we need a workable model. Our sustainability flower, which was developed by a European think-tank consisting of organic pioneers like Helmy Abouleish from Sekem, offers just that. Through Nature & More we have implemented the sustainability flower since 2004, for more transparency about fresh organic fruits and vegetables.”

The report from Wageningen University mentions some organic strategies that benefit a wide spectrum of sustainability aspects. For example, organic soil management increases the soil fertility, benefits biodiversity and water holding capacity, while reducing erosion, wash-out, greenhouse gas emissions and water pollution. Engelsman: “The different aspects of sustainability are, in the end, intricately linked. The image of the sustainability flower illustrates this elegantly. It has greatly helped us to bridge the anonymity gap between the farmer and the consumer. We trust it will find broad acceptance in the future.”

IFOAM is the umbrella organisation of the worldwide organic movement, residing in Bonn. Nature & More was developed by Netherlands-based Eosta and is used throughout Europe as a transparency system for organic fruits and vegetables: see http://www.natureandmore.com. The WUR report can be found here: http://www.biokennis.nl/Nieuws (Dutch, dd. 7 Dec).

Source: EOSTA / Nature & More

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