…and so is the case for organic food

The popular weedkiller, glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, is so commonly used that it has been detected in small levels in bread, human urine and breast milk

 

Neonic pesticides are damaging the bee population, which has an effect on our delicate ecosystem PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images
Neonic pesticides are damaging the population, which has an effect on our delicate ecosystem PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images

Traditional farming and gardening has long taken a straightforward approach: if an unwanted plant or animal interferes, it is to be killed. We even developed a special vocabulary to help justify our actions: the animals were “vermin” and the plants were “weeds”.

And, in the case of one hen-house plunderer, we came up with the elaborate ritual that is fox hunting, complete with a special ‘language of avoidance’ that anthropologists have found in cultures around the world (the fox is a “dog”, its face is a “mask”, its tail is a “brush”, the dogs are “hounds”).

Unfortunately for us, some human classifications of have little to do with reality. Over millennia, nature has created a complex eco-system in which most things have their place in a slowly shifting balance. It is a delicate situation that is easily upset.

Introduce an alien species and it can become a rampant ‘pest’ that causes all sorts of problems. Just ask our plucky white claw crayfish about the arrival of their bigger, nastier signal crayfish cousins from the US – thanks to transportation provided by us humans.

Our approach to pest control represents another significant intervention that can have unintended consequences. Evidence has been growing steadily that neonicotinoid insecticides (also known as ) cause a problem for bees.

Curated from – The Indepedent

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