Sweet Acre Farm is officially Certified Organic!
While we are indeed proud to be recognized as adhering to the rigorous standards of organic agriculture, it’s a bit of a strange feeling. We’ve always farmed the way we do: completely spray-free and with the utmost consideration for our soil, plant, and insect life on the farm. In fact we have been certified in the past. So this hasn’t been so much a process of changing our behavior in order to become certified, as a choice to certify because we were already doing what is required.
Organic certification can be a divisive thing. Many conventional farmers think it’s a bunch of hogwash and no way to have a viable farm business. Many uncertified organic farmers think certification doesn’t go far enough, allowing the same mentality of spraying pesticides & fungicides, just with certified organic products. Some customers think organic food is elitist and a rip-off. Others think that the only food you can trust is certified organic.
The point, really, is that it’s important to continue the conversation around all of these ideas. No, all certified organic farms are not perfect bastions of ecological balance. Yes, there are farmers who aren’t certified that are far better land stewards than some certified farms. Yes, organic farms (certified or not) tend to have more losses to pests and disease, which is in large part why their products tend to be pricier. Yes, it will be easier for us, when asked by a customer “are you organic?” to simply say “yes” instead of “no, but… [insert diatribe on ecology/local-economy/human-health/social justice as customers eyes glaze over]” as we have in the past.
But we don’t want the simplicity of that question and answer to discount the complex topic it touches on. We care about Eco-Logical agriculture on pretty much all the levels one can – that’s why we are organic farmers! But we understand that each consumer has their own “entry-point” to the conversation, their own reason for making an effort to seek out good food. What’s yours?