Whether organic farming is sustainable or not has been the subject of debate. Below we will look at both the pros and the cons of organic farming, to help you to make an informed decision when you shop for food and other items that contain organic, natural ingredients.


  • The fertilisers used within organic farming are made from natural, organic materials such as manure and compost. This means that there are no harmful chemicals being used that could leach into the soils and waterways, which could cause contamination and damage to ecosystems
  • Crops are rotated to help increase soil fertility and stop the dependence on certain nutrients
  • Due to healthier soils, there is less chance of land degradation from occurring
  • Crops grow naturally and are not genetically modified
  • Organic farming uses 45% less energy than conventional farming
  • Organic farms also have an increased amount of biodiversity as fertilisers, pesticides and weed killers are not used
  • 40% less carbon emissions are released through organic farming, and they also act as a carbon sequester, meaning it stores carbon instead of releasing it


  • More land is needed to farm organically, meaning that there is an increased need for deforestation to occur, releasing more CO2 into the atmosphere
  • If crops are not rotated, organic farming can lead to a depletion of nutrients in the soil, if this occurs yields could decrease
  • Many organic farms use thin sheets of black plastic to stop the growth of weeds and to prevent damage from pests. After this plastic has been used it then becomes waste
  • Topsoil that is needed to grow crops, can be destroyed during the tilling process which could affect the crops yield