The Dirtiest Crop on Earth: Why conventional cotton should be avoided.
Conventional cotton, also entitled as the dirtiest crop on earth, can probably be found from everyone's closet.
While it’s the oldest known textile and one of the world’s leading agricultural crops, it’s production process is extremely unsustainable and harmful for both our health and our planet’s health.
Luckily, the recent years have witnessed a change in the way we think about our clothes, the materials they are made of, the manufacturing processes and the fashion industry in general.
Different sustainable fashion movements, such as the Fashion Revolution, have gained a much needed and well-deserved worldwide attention. Also, the use of organically grown cotton has become more and more common. The course of development is right, but the pace may not be fast enough. It is claimed that only 1% of cotton produced globally is organic.
Organic Cotton vs. Conventional Cotton: Does it really matter?
The threats of growing conventional cotton are well-acknowledged, but can organic cotton really make a difference? The answer is clear: hell yes!
Notably, the main benefit of organic cotton is that its growing and manufacturing processes don’t include the use of synthetic pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and high-impact dyes, among other hazardous chemicals.
These chemicals are proven to include heavy metals and toxins, and thus they are poisonous to cotton farmers, factory workers, as well as to us as consumers when they end up into our closets within the fibers.
It is reported that each year nearly 20,000 people die from pesticide poisonings, while as many as 77 million suffer from them.
In the United States alone, 10,000 farmers are reported to die from cancers related to the pesticide poisonings. That’s the scale of the issue we’re dealing with.
Besides the massive health benefits, organically grown cotton is also beneficial for the environment, animals and the entire ecosystem.