For starters, growing and harvesting Organic cotton uses 71% less water and 62% less energy than conventional cotton... (Source here).
However with the overload of information that we get told and marketed to each and everyday about our choices, it's sometimes overwhelming knowing whats right from wrong and what to listen to vs what we can move on from... But when it comes to fibres, you often have a choice, (Natural over Synthetic, Organic over Conventional) choosing Organic Cotton can TRULY change lives of humans, the planet and well, your health too!
Here at Luna & Rose, we choose to use to produce our pieces with Organic Cotton for very obvious reasons. Producing out of Bali, we are limited to our fabric options however through demand and constantly requesting Organic options from our fabric suppliers, over the years we have slowly started to see an increase of Organic fabric offerings - Chaaa Hoo!! If we're not producing from Organic Cotton, we're making delicious comfortable items of clothing from Flax Linen, another sustainable fabric option. It is important to us to be able to offer you, our beautiful conscious customers, the most natural clothing which protects the producers, the environment, and yourself. (No residual chemicals soaking into your skin to cause allergies & rashes!)
So today we've made it nice and simple. Here are 5 Simple reasons why you should strive to choose Organic Cotton, when you can.
1. By choosing Organic Cotton, this hugely helps to eliminate hazardous pesticides from global production.
The use of these chemicals has led to the hospitalization of up to 1 million farmworkers every year. Enough is enough... By Choosing Organic cotton, which is grown and produced without the use of toxic chemicals & pesticides, means that the health and safety of the growing communities and the risk to the environment is much less compared to conventional cotton.
Organic cotton does not get treated with any chemicals when being woven into fabric and does not get treated with toxic finishing chemicals such as formaldehyde which is used as a fire retardant or easy iron finish on the garments. Need we say more?
2. Choosing Organic Cotton gives power to FARMERS, not the Genetically Modified companies selling seeds & pesticides
The circumstances leading to heavy dependency on some of agriculture’s most toxic chemicals (some of them banned in developed countries) by the world’s poorest, often illiterate farmers makes conventional cotton farming a moral issue as well as a health and safety one. By Choosing Organic cotton, which does not allow the use of any genetically modified seeds, helps to protect natural biodiversity and ecology of crops. This, along with giving farmers more financial 'freedom' by not relying on the purchase of GM seed & pesticides in order to generate new crops season after season is reason enough to switch to Organic Cotton ASAP...
3. Choosing Organic Cotton helps farmers feed their families and local community
Cotton is the most widespread profitable non-food crop in the world. Its production provides income for more than 250 million people worldwide and employs almost 7% of all labor in developing countries. But Conventional Cotton ALSO includes the use of expensive & harmful pesticides as well as reliance on GM Seed companies to ensure their crops reseed year after year and their production continues. By choosing Organic Cotton, you are choosing the health & wellbeing of all Cotton farmers across the globe. With our money dictating what is being produced (Supply & demand) by purchasing Organic Cotton items means that the demand for Organic Cotton production will sky-rocket. And what does this mean for the farmers growing these crops?
Organic certification ensures safe working conditions, a good price for their produce from buyers and a fair wage. Healthy farmers means a longer life-span, happier families, less reliance on medical assistance (from work related illnesses especially) and a healthier future generation that is not exposed to harmful chemicals through their parents work. When their crops are produced Organically and without the use of chemicals, farmers can also grow fruit & vegetable crops to feed their families & communities meaning less reliance on supermarkets and purchased produce. These guys are farmers after all - they know how to work their land the best!
4. Organic Cotton production saves precious water and combats climate change
Production and processing of cotton uses a large amount of water. Some experts contend that cotton is the largest user of water among all agricultural commodities. Surface and ground waters are often diverted to irrigate cotton fields, leading to freshwater loss through evaporation, and inefficient water management.
Pesticides threaten the quality of soil and water, as well as the health of biodiversity in and downstream from the fields. Heavy use of pesticides also raises concern for the health of farm workers and nearby populations. Runoff of pesticides, fertilisers, and minerals from cotton fields contaminates rivers, lakes, wetlands, and underground aquifers. These pollutants affect biodiversity directly by immediate toxicity or indirectly through long-term accumulation.
Change is happening. For example through the over BETTER COTTON INITIATIVE, 75,000 Pakistani farmers have reduced their use of water by 39 per cent, helping reduce pressure on the countries main Indus River. In addition, the Better Cotton Initiative helped these farmers reduce pesticides by 47 per cent and chemical fertiliser by 39 per cent across over 300,000 hectares in 2012. Yields are just as good, and there is an average 11 percent increase in income compared to farmers who are still using conventional practices. Partnerships like this are helping pave the way for a new method of production and through education and awareness, we too, as consumers, can help ensure that this is the new normal and we don't go back to where we have come from....
5. Organic Cotton protects you and your family's skin from harmful chemicals
Unlike the nutrition facts on the back of your favourite food, clothing doesn’t come with a convenient itemized list of ingredients. Instead the 8,000 synthetic chemicals used in fashion manufacturing, most of which contain known carcinogens and hormone disruptors, are kept undisclosed and hiding within the fibres of our fabrics.
Research shows that even the smallest dose of pesticide exposure has been linked to brain, fetal damage, autoimmune diseases and sterility in humans. Unlike organic cotton, as mentioned above, a range of toxic chemicals are required to process conventional cotton. Some of these chemicals include silicone waxes, petroleum scours, softeners, heavy metals, flame retardants, ammonia, and formaldehyde in which body heat and sweating actually accelerate the absorption of these residues into your skin. We don't mean to put you off completely but we are suggesting you to think about it...
Especially when it comes to what you are sleeping on & breathing in all night long, as well as your babies and little humans who don't yet have choices of their own.
**Remember, choosing ANY Natural fabrics (Such as Cotton, Linen, Silk and Hemp) is ALWAYS better than choosing Synthetic fibres that are made from plastic (Polyester, Neoprene, Acrylic etc). Once a synthetic fibre is made & in production, it literally CAN NOT break down for 100+ years, longer than a plastic bag. Not only that, synthetic fibres are hugely toxic on our environment including the detrimental effects on our sea life.
Money is power and where YOU choose to spend your money (Products, people, donations, investments) truly makes a difference to not only the humans behind producing and working in those industries but the health and well-being of their families too. Choosing to shop Natural Fibres and Organic Ones where you can, is a simple and highly effective option to help do your part as an end consumer. Currently, all of our T-Shirts are produced with GOTS certified Organic Cotton and as demand continues (Which means our fabric suppliers in Bali will import more Organic Fabric options), we look forward to continuing to offer Organically Certified fabrications to our apparel in the coming months and years.
Thank you for your efforts. And thank you for shopping sustainably. x
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