Organic Cotton - The Sustainable Choice
The benefits of organic cotton
Organically farmed and produced textiles have many benefits socially and environmentally, which contribute to the progression towards fulfilling the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and helps to significantly minimise the short and long-term environmental impacts of the textiles and fashion industry. They are more environmentally sustainable by using less water and fewer toxic chemicals, improving working conditions in factories and on farms, and by offering a viable, long-term alternative to GM cotton that provides food security to farmers.
5 reasons organic cotton is a sustainable choice:
1. Combats climate change
Organic farmers use natural methods to grow cotton, not fossil-fuel based fertilisers. By working with nature, farmers build healthy soils which store carbon and help to combat climate change. Organic cotton emits 46% less greenhouse gas than non-organic.
2. Saves precious water
Organic cotton uses less water than conventionally produced cotton. Hazardous synthetic pesticides and fertilisers are banned in organic farming, so rivers, lakes and drinking water are kept cleaner too. Organic farming creates healthy soils, which act like a sponge, soaking up water during floods and holding it for longer in times of drought.
3. Helps farmers feed their families
Organic farmers always grow other crops alongside their cotton. These crops can provide farming families and their communities with a more stable, accessible, abundant and diverse food supply and another source of income.
4. Gives control to farmers not GM companies
Genetically modified (GM) seeds are banned in organic farming, so farmers are not reliant on a handful of GM companies. Instead, they save their seeds year after year, and work with the environment in a long-term, sustainable way.
5. Eliminates hazardous synthetic pesticides
Organic farmers use natural methods like crop rotation to control pests and diseases, not chemical cocktails. Hazardous synthetic pesticides used in non-organic farming can damage ecosystems, poison waterways and endanger workers who can’t always afford safety equipment needed to protect them. Conventional cotton alone is responsible for 16% of all insecticides sold worldwide.
Organic Textiles Research & Reports
We are the leading voice for organic textiles in the UK and has have published a number of in depth reports on the benefits of organic cotton.