Soil Association ‘bemused’ by organic farming criticism

The Soil Association has hit back at suggestions that organic farming could be worse for the environment than conventional farming methods.

Climate expert Lord John Krebs told the Oxford Farming Conference on Wednesday (7 January) that organic farming might do more damage to the environment due to increased land required and carbon released from the soil.

“The fact is organic farming is, in general, less productive per hectare than conventional farming and if we want to produce more organic food we need more land to do it, which releases more carbon into the atmosphere,” he said.

See also: Only 100 harvests left in UK farm soils, scientists warn

Lord Krebs, who advises the government on climate change policy, argued that agricultural methods, such as minimum or no tillage, could help to protect and manage soils and store carbon to prevent the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

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