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Advances in Organic Farming
2021, Pages 241-254

Conventional versus organic farming: Nutrient status

Neha Chausali, Jyoti Saxena

Biochemical Engineering Department, Bipin Tripathi Kumaon Institute of Technology, Almora, India.


Use of high input conventional farming methods including toxic pesticides, herbicides, chemical fertilizers, genetically modified microorganisms, growth regulators and other chemicals has affected not only soil fertility but also have serious health and environmental hazards. Nowadays, organic farming is a sustainable alternative to conventional farming strategies. Organic farming aims to conserve and build soil health, biodiversity and natural resources by using sustainable agriculture methods. It has a significant role in reducing soil erosion and nutrient leaching (nitrate and phosphorous) as well as in improving water retention capacity of soil and greenhouse gas emission. Reports showed that in general there is higher nutrient content specifically higher level of vitamin C, antioxidants, magnesium, phosphorous and some micronutrients (minerals, vitamins, trace elements) but significantly less nitrates in organically grown food crops. Protein levels were also found lower although the quality was better in some of organic vegetables and crops. Overall, reports of published data showed that total and organic carbon, total nitrogen and available phosphorous with Ca, Mg, Mn, Zn, Cu were greater in soil under organic cropping systems. Further, enhanced nitrogen mineralization with comparatively higher microbial biomass and enzymatic activities in soil under organic management was stated in literatures.

Keywords: Organic food, Nutrients, Protein, Sustainable agriculture.

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