Traditionally grown cotton is used for designing clothes that the majority of the world population nowadays wears. It owes its popularity to its extraordinary features including its ability to breathe, absorb moisture and feel light on our skin. However, due to these conventional growing methods, cotton is regarded as the world’s dirtiest crop. And as such, it can cause various allergic reactions to some individuals and also generate other serious long-term consequences affecting the whole planet. A healthy and safe alternative to regular cotton is organic cotton and we can find this material in many products today. Read on to learn about the benefits of organic cotton.
Conventional vs organic cotton
To understand why organic cotton is superior in many aspects, we need to contrast the conventional and organic cotton and its growing processes.
Traditionally grown cotton is the dirtiest crop on the planet and a vast majority of farmers growing cotton suffer from pesticide poisoning every year. The global production of cotton is now controlled mostly by genetically modified companies, which also has many health hazards. And a staggering 20% of water pollution comes from textile treatment and dyeing.
On the other hand, organic cotton is grown differently. Organic cotton is produced according to strict safety standards by independent certification bodies. These crops aren’t treated with pesticides, herbicides and other toxic chemicals. Thus, by eliminating them we keep waterways and drinking water safe and clean. At the same time, you don’t expose your skin to any toxins coming from your clothes. Also, organic cotton uses less water in its production process compared to traditionally grown cotton.
Benefits of organic textile products
There are many benefits of organic textile products and some of them include being safer for the environment, the farmers as well as the consumers, preventing allergies and other skin concerns, reducing exposure to harmful chemicals, pesticides and insecticides and improving your mental and emotional health, among others.
1. Organic textile products are eco-friendlier
One of the reasons to buy products made from organic cotton is the fact that is an eco-friendlier option. When it comes to the organic cotton process of production, it uses less carbon due to lesser fuel and energy consumption. It also prevents water contamination as already mentioned. This is due to the non-use of pesticides, herbicides and insecticides. Moreover, the health of farmworkers is not jeopardized. All in all, this method of growing organic cotton develops healthy, fertile soil, conserves biodiversity and protects natural resources. For example, 80% of land under organic cotton is rain-fed meaning that water is derived from rainfall and not other irrigation systems.
2. The production of organic cotton adheres to rigid safety standards
Organic cotton strives to ensure customer value by respecting high ethical standards such as Fairtrade Cotton, Better Cotton Initiative, FLO International and other global movements that promote organic cotton. Companies that produce organic cotton produce it according to strictly regulated conditions and methods, ensuring that it is healthy and safe to use products derived from organic cotton and at the same time, ensuring that they are high quality.
3. It prevents allergies and skin abnormalities
When it comes to allergies and other skin concerns, many people nowadays struggle with these skin abnormalities. In many cases, they are derived from materials that we wear and that come in touch with our skin. If it’s a material derived from a crop that was treated with toxic chemicals in its growing stage, it can easily be reflected on our skin and general health. On the contrary, organic cotton has no such harmful effects. People with allergies or very sensitive skin especially can benefit from products made of organic cotton, as well as people who don’t suffer from any skin concerns. That’s why you should choose clothes and towels made from organic cotton or other naturally grown materials. In order to assure only healthy materials come in touch with your skin, you should reconsider the bedding and linen you use. It would be best if you switched to organic cotton or bamboo sheets, bedding and other linen.
4. It is better for the farmers as well
There are plenty of organic cotton farmers around the world, and they have reported working on an organic cotton farm that complies with ‘decent work’ policy and is ‘fair-trade’ certified either partially or fully. It also encourages women to work in the field of organic cotton production. And not only working, but owning and managing such farms.
5. It conserves water
The majority of people don’t know how much water to produce a pair of jeans using the traditional method is needed. Do you? It takes staggering 1800 gallons of water! Exactly because of this, the Aral Sea in Asia is being drained slowly. Organic cotton, on the other hand, has a much lower environmental footprint. When compared, the production of organic cotton takes 71% less water and 62^% less energy than the production of conventional GMO cotton. There’s quite a difference, don’t you think?
6. It reduces your exposure to harmful pesticides and chemicals
Traditionally grown cotton is one of the most toxic crops in the world. In terms of statistics, even though it makes up only 2.5% of global cropland, it uses up to 25% of the world’s insecticides. It uses chemicals such as aldicarb and paraquat. Moreover, GMO cotton is sprayed with huge amounts of Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide, of which the main ingredient is glyphosate, classified as “probably carcinogenic to human,” by the World Health Organization. It has been linked to different health conditions such as obesity, depression, type 2 diabetes and cancer. This isn’t the case with organic cotton as it only uses organic-approved fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides from plants, animals and minerals for the prevention of pests and diseases. Therefore, it slashes health risks for you.
We should carefully consider what we eat, drink and wear nowadays as all aspects are jeopardized and we’re in danger of developing a health issue because of poisons and toxins all around us.