Cotton is often thought of as a pure and natural fabric but conventional cotton is considered the world's dirtiest crop due to its heavy use of pesticides and is one of the top four GMO crops produced in the world.
You might be surprised to know that conventional cotton accounts for nearly 25% of the insecticides and 10% of the pesticides used throughout the world, although is it grown on only 3% of the total cultivated area. Around 8% of poisonous fertilisers end up in the atmosphere, producing large amounts of nitrous oxide which creates a huge health risk to the ecosystem and to us.
So many chemicals are used on the plants. These chemicals are bad for the health of the workers, bad for the environment and bad for the organisms that depend on the surrounding plants and soil. There is an overwhelming body of research showing higher incidents of serious diseases and developmental problems from exposure to agricultural chemicals. These chemicals poison farmers and factory workers all over the world. In the US alone, over 10.000 farmers die each year of cancer due to being exposed to such pesticides.
The chemicals that are used to produce conventional cotton are known to cause allergies (such as eczema, rosacea, and even skin cancer), respiratory problems, hormonal imbalance, reproductive effects, birth defects, heart palpitations and nerve damage.
Organic cotton has less of a negative environmental impact. The main benefit is that the crops aren’t treated with pesticides, insecticides and GMOs.
Organic cotton production ensures a sustainable living for the farmers and their families. With organic cotton production, along with the use of natural chilli and garlic repellents, the technique of inter-planting is employed, whereby different crops which detract pests are interspersed or grown side-by-side with the cotton.
Wearing organic fabrics has a postive impact on the health of our planet. And yet, less than one percent of all cotton grown is organic. We can and must do better.
As consumers we make the difference by choosing to protect our health and mother earth. You make a difference by choosing organic cotton!