The restricted use of antibiotics in organic animal husbandry indirectly influences the use of energy and emissions of greenhouse gasses in organic compared to conventional livestock production due to the mentioned management requirements aiming at improving health and welfare in order to avoid treatments.
Definition of terms
Thus, the differences between farming systems are mainly caused by the same factors as related to nutrient management see section on Environment , especially the increased feed use in organic livestock production. GHG emission per kg livestock product was almost identical in organic and conventional systems for pig meat Halberg et al.
However, the variation between farms is high, and Kristensen et al. There are methodological difficulties in accounting for differences in the soil carbon sequestration in such comparisons, but modelling studies suggest that inclusion of this factor would decrease the net GHG emissions more per kg pork or milk produced in organic than in conventional systems Halberg et al. Because of the larger share of clover grass fields in organic crop rotations, the carbon sequestration is probably in average higher in organic agriculture than in conventional. Antimicrobial resistance is recognised as an important threat to human health.
The mentioned regulation of antibiotics use in organic farming and restrictions on marketing of products after medication considerably reduce the risk of finding antibiotic residues in organic animal products delivered to dairies and slaughterhouses. Because the use of antibiotics in organic animal production is low compared to conventional production Wingstrand et al.
Low use of antibiotics also provides less risk of mistakes in the production chain, e.
U.S. Food and Drug Administration
In relation to risks or health benefits for the consumer, it is important that the improved quality is maintained throughout the production chain. This negative change implies cross contamination and may be handled through improved hygiene and management, although the mechanism behind this observation is not yet clear.
As an indirect effect, the requirements for feeding and access to grazing for organic livestock result in differences in the composition of fatty acids in organic milk and eggs compared with conventional. The proportion of healthier fatty acids is more favourable to humans in organic eggs and milk compared to conventional Anderson ; Larsen et al. The use of antibiotics and the antibiotic resistance is significantly lower in organic pig production compared to conventional Wingstrand et al.
The reduced use of antibiotics in organic pig production could be due to differences in treatment thresholds in the two production systems, and the lower application of antibiotics in organic pig production could indicate a welfare problem if diseased animals are not treated or treated too late. The difference in the level of lesions therefore seems more related to differences in the production system than to differences in the veterinary treatment regime. Research has shown that a determined effort in Danish organic dairy herds can reduce the use of antibiotics even further Bennedsgaard et al.
In a recent review, Arnott et al. They found lower levels of lameness, hoof pathologies, hock lesions and mastitis in organic dairy cows than in conventional, which evidently would explain the lower medicine use. Pasture-based systems therefore seem to reduce the need for antibiotic treatments. Previous studies have shown that many organic farmers emphasise active care treatment Vaarst et al. Focus on animal care, such as assigning hospital pens with extra bedding and extra milking, promote the welfare of diseased animals.
However, often, the veterinarians do not have sufficient experience in facilitating health management on organic livestock farms with a low use of antibiotics Duval et al. The duration of antibiotic treatment in organic cattle herds is shorter than in conventional cattle herds. It may be because all medical treatments in Danish organic animal production must be administered by a veterinarian, and therefore, it is more expensive than in conventional animal production, where the farmer is allowed to administer the follow-up treatment himself on the condition that he has a health advisory agreement with a veterinarian.
Bennedsgaard et al. A shorter duration of treatment may result in a lower bacteriological curing rate and hereby an increased risk of recurrence and development of antibiotic resistance. However, Bennedsgaard et al. Combating of antibiotic resistance in animal production requires not only a reduction in the use of antibiotics but also a better understanding of the effects of Zn and Cu supplementation in animal diets in relation to antibiotic resistance.
Resistance to Zn is often linked with resistance to methicillin in staphylococci, and Zn supplementation to animal feed may increase the proportion of multiresistant E. Resistance to Cu in bacteria, in particular enterococci, is often associated with resistance to antimicrobial drugs like macrolides and glycopeptides e. The maximum content of Zn and Cu in the feed is regulated by EU legislation that applies to conventional as well as organic husbandry.
However, for some age groups, the limits herein are too high compared to the need of the animals, and this is particularly true for organic monogastrics that in contrast to conventional monogastrics get a considerable part of their feed from outdoor areas EGTOP Direct and indirect contribution of organic farming to public goods due to restrictive use of antibiotics plus compensating animal health and welfare promoting requirements.
More space outdoors and access to grazing contribute positively to Human Health and Welfare, because the animal products have a healthier fatty acid composition due to grazing.
However, these requirements result in both positive and negative effects on the Environment. Leaching of nitrate is lower on organic dairy farms due to larger areas with clover grass fields and lower stocking rates, but ammonia volatilisation and nitrate leaching are higher on organic pig and poultry farms. As demonstrated above, the strict organic regulation on the use of pesticides and antibiotics as well as the compensating rules to make the use of pesticides and antibiotics redundant or minimal the indirect effects explains a large part of the impacts of organic farming on public goods.
The two examples also demonstrate the synergies and dilemmas of organic farming in relation to the different public goods, as they are integral effects of the organic principles and specific rules. The requirements for crop rotation and limitations on fertiliser use together with the limited access to pesticides reinforce the need for organic crop management, which builds on prevention of weeds and pests through combinations of annual and perennial crops, growing of legumes for nitrogen fixation, nutrient recycling and catch crops, mechanical weeding and use of functional biodiversity.
Likewise, the limitation on livestock medication is linked with requirements for more space indoors and outdoors per animal and access to outdoor areas with grazing and feeding of roughage—also to monogastrics—plus limitations in the use of feed additives including synthetic amino acids. These rules direct certain characteristics of livestock production including the design and use of outdoor areas, feeding strategies and feed use efficiency, crop rotations, manure handling and nutrient cycling.
The crop and livestock practices in combination influence the nutrient and feed use efficiencies, the crop and livestock yields, all of which have implications for the impact on public goods. However, the resulting characteristics of a specific farm—the farm type cash crops, pigs, dairy, poultry or mixed production , the geographical location, the soil type and the strategies and daily management by the individual farmer also has great influence.
Therefore, the effects on specific public goods will vary significantly between different organic farm types as well as within the farm types, which means that there is room for improvement of the farm management. A number of farm management tools have been developed over the last two decades for voluntary integration of animal health and welfare and other public goods in self-assessment tools for farmers Halberg et al.
Organic organisations and advisors in Denmark and other European countries promote the idea of using holistic sustainability assessment tools. This is also a main idea of the concept of Organic 3. However, until now, there is little documentation that such an individual approach will have significant impact in terms of improving the contribution of organic farming to public goods. Another approach, also supported by the Danish organic organisations, is to strengthen and extend the rules for organic farming. At the moment, there are no specific requirements in the EU Organic Regulation or the Danish organic guidelines on organic farming as regards resource efficiency including energy , climate change mitigation and contribution to nature and biodiversity.
Our analysis demonstrates that the requirements in organic agriculture on restrictive use of pesticides and antibiotics and the derived requirements and practices to compensate for that have direct, mostly positive impact on several public goods, especially on biodiversity and animal health and welfare. There seems to be a synergy between these effects, but there are also dilemmas, most notably between requirement for securing animal health and welfare with outdoor access and the environmental management. The analysis also shows that organic production may have very different impacts on policy focus areas where there are no specific requirements in the organic regulation, such as climate change mitigation.
The 51st Session of Codex Committee on Pesticide Residues held in Macao
However, there are also other reasons for negative or no impact of organic farming. The challenges of ammonia and nitrate losses in many organic production systems compared to similar conventional seem to be caused by difficulties in nutrient management by manure application and biological N fixation in the crop rotation Eriksen et al. This is mainly a technical question and a dilemma between animal health and welfare vs.
Significant research and innovation efforts are currently focusing on how to ameliorate these problems by, e. Another focus of research is production of high-quality protein for monogastrics from alternative sources such as insects, marine biomass and green biomass to optimise the amino acid composition, which cannot be balanced by addition of synthetic amino acids as in conventional feeds. An integrated biorefinery system for production of high-quality protein with subsequent bioenergy production from the residual fraction and recycling of the nutrients in the biogas effluent to cash crops could help in reducing the excess nutrient losses and GHG emission from organic pig and poultry production Molinuevo-Salces et al.
As regards health effects of organic diets, it is difficult to prove individual health effects from eating organic foods when comparing to conventional, product by product. The difference in climate impact and nutrient losses between organic and conventional agriculture is most often also modest when comparing product by product. Generally, the difference in climate impact and resource use between different food types is larger and more consistent with meat products having the higher impacts than between agricultural production systems.
However, there might be wider effects of organic agriculture at food system level when considering the linkages between diet choice, production system and the combined results in terms of health, resource use and environmental impacts. The potential synergies in linking agri-environmental and climatic questions with dietary choices and human health Tilman and Clark can become a strong driver for support to organic agriculture in a food system perspective.
Another aspect of the food system approach is the perceived linkages with rural development and social and business innovations, which we did not include here Jespersen Organic agriculture is often linked with new local cooperation networks involving organic farmers, small- and medium-scale organic processing plants and innovative marketing initiatives, either as direct marketing or through local retailers. It should be noted, however, that the vast majority of organic produce sold in Denmark finds its way to consumers via supermarkets and discount chains, which is an important factor behind the high average spending on organic food per capita in Denmark.
Professionalisation of the organic organisations in Denmark has allowed them to act as intermediaries in connecting small, specialised producers of high-quality food and beverage with retailers, hereby to some degree counteracting the general trend towards larger farms. The original knowledge synthesis Jespersen and this paper was focused on assessing synergies and trade-offs related to organic farming in Denmark, but the literature reviews in relation to each topic also included international studies and reviews where relevant.
Therefore, it is expected that the overall results may have general relevance for large parts of organic agriculture in Europe. Since most of the effects analysed are results of the EU Organic Regulation, ideas for strengthening particular aspects such as resource efficiency and climate change mitigation would be most efficiently addressed at a trans-European level.
As a background for that similar assessments of synergies and dilemmas in the contribution of organic agriculture to public goods across Europe would be welcome. The demonstrated interlinkages between the effects on public goods have inspired the idea illustrated in the multitool Fig.
This idea has been discussed in different informal and formal meetings on organic agriculture, which is why we used this as an inspirational starting point for the knowledge synthesis Jespersen However, considerations for using organic agriculture as a public policy instrument in Denmark have been limited to acknowledging the lower nitrate losses from organic dairy farming and supporting organic pesticide-free agriculture on land directly above groundwater sources used for drinking water.
So far, policy makers have not explicitly considered supporting organic agriculture as a single policy measure to achieve several public goods at the same time. This might be due to the single-issue focus on agri-environment policy measures where policy makers most often analyse public goods measures independently of each other, e. With such a single-issue focus analysts may find supporting organic agriculture expensive compared to other more direct measures such as demanding catch crops in conventional farming. However, analysing the same objectives from an integrated perspective might point to organic agriculture as the most cost-effective policy option in areas where the demonstrated synergies are relevant.
On the other hand, the idea of organic agriculture as a multitool in relation to public goods needs more evidence of the synergies between public goods effects in relation to specific organic farm types, farm sizes, soil types and geographical location as well as management.
Moreover, the relevance of organic farming as a multitool in relation to public goods will depend on improvements—in particular as regards resource efficiency and climate change mitigation. Initiatives to better regulate and document such public goods effects could be important for securing the long-term support to organic agriculture. Besides, it would be relevant to discuss and update the formulation of the organic principles of the EU Organic Regulation and to evaluate how the specific requirements can be formulated to make the organic principles better translated into practice—especially as regards the organic requirements, which give rise to dilemmas in relation to the contribution of organic farming to public goods.
The authors greatly acknowledge the financial support of the work from the Ministry of Environment and Food of Denmark. Skip to main content Skip to sections. Advertisement Hide. Download PDF. Contribution of organic farming to public goods in Denmark. Open Access. First Online: 29 August Public goods Agriculture can bring both positive and negative impacts on the environment and society. Regulation of organic farming in Denmark Denmark has state regulation and control of organic farming Landbrugs- og Fiskeristyrelsen Status of organic farming in Denmark The development of organic farming in Denmark has partly been market driven and partly pushed by public organic action plans and support measures Halberg et al.
Organic farming as a multitool in relation to public goods In public regulation and policy action plans, the focus is often at one public good at a time, e. The directive requests the member states to provide and update action plans for vulnerable areas to reduce nitrate pollution. Regulation of pesticide use and protection of biodiversity and animal welfare is developed and implemented separately. Open image in new window. Most pesticides are chemically synthesised synthetic , although some are based on naturally occurring compounds. In order to protect consumer and animal health, the EU has introduced maximum residue levels MRLs for pesticides in food and feed of plant and animal origin in EU Reg.
According to the pesticide residue control programme of the EU for , the share of organic food samples with pesticide residues was Table 1 Pesticide residue levels above and below maximum residue level MRL in conventional and organic food samples analysed under the control programmes in In summary, the ban on synthetic pesticides has a number of direct positive effects on different public goods, i.
Figure 2 presents an overview of the systemic effects of using agro-ecological practices as a response to the non-use of pesticides—and the linked reduced fertiliser use—in organic agriculture. In summary, the restrictive use of antibiotics in organic livestock production has some direct positive effects on the public goods, i. Moreover, the required management practices aimed at securing livestock health and welfare and preventing medicine needs impact animal health, environment and climate emissions Fig.
Acknowledgements The authors greatly acknowledge the financial support of the work from the Ministry of Environment and Food of Denmark. Accessed on 6 Aug Anderson KE Comparison of fatty acid, cholesterol, and vitamin A and E composition in eggs from hens housed in conventional cage and range production facilities. Accessed on 28 Apr Anonymous Aftale om Pesticidstrategi — af Accessed on 24 Apr Acta Vet Scand 48 Vol — Action plan against the rising threats from antimicrobial resistance.
COM Use of antimicrobial agents and occurrence of antimicrobial resistance in bacteria from food animals, food and humans in Denmark. Denver S, Christensen T Organic food and health concerns: a dietary approach using observed data. Accessed on 6 Apr Accessed 18 Apr October establishing a framework for Community action to achieve the sustainable use of pesticides Google Scholar. Nyt fra Danmarks Statistisk Nr.
EFSA Revision of the currently authorised maximum copper content in complete feed. EMA Sales of veterinary antimicrobial agents in 29 European countries in Trends from to EMA Antimicrobial resistance. Eriksen J Implications of grazing by sows for nitrate leaching, from grassland and the succeeding cereal crop. There are several other pesticides sometimes used in specific regions that must be analyzed in the drinking water. However, considering the inability to regulate all pesticides with potential occurrence in drinking water, it is necessary that each state or region identify their priority compounds and include them in regional monitoring programs.
Another important limitation for the establishment of Brazilian drinking water standards is that several ANVISA monographs, does not inform the ADI values, although in this work we were able to obtain data and offer interim drinking water quality criteria for substances It would help to determine the proper allocation factor to be used in drinking water criteria as well. This choice is usually guided by physical and chemical properties of the active ingredients. Another important consideration is that, even non-food crop substances should be considered for inclusion in the drinking water norm because they may end up in water bodies too, as verified elsewhere 21 , 23 , 47 — The effective dissemination of water quality information to consumers via Sisagua and by the water suppliers would be also an important form of social control, which could lead to a request to increase the number of monitoring data in Sisagua and to improve the data quality of the system In Europe, for example, there is web-based service called Water Information System for Europe WISE provided by a web-portal entry to water related information, with comprehensive information of the quality of inland and marine waters.
For users from EU institutions or other environmental administrations, WISE provides input to thematic assessments in the context of EU water related policies; for water professionals and scientists, WISE facilitates access to reference documents and thematic data, which can be downloaded for further analyses; and for the general public, WISE illustrates a wide span of water related information by visualizations on interactive maps, graphs and indicators There is no doubt that monitoring of pesticides in water is a complex activity which starts with the sampling plan and priority substances that will be analyzed.
Chemical analyzes are expensive, require modern equipment and labor skills. As advised by WHO, it is necessary to discuss and assess whether the sampling procedures are appropriately selected, especially sampling sites and sample preservation Therefore, the evaluation and validation of the data needs to occur systematically, with effective actions to improve the information quality. A constant interaction with the water supplier through guidance, reporting and monitoring is also important. The strengths and pitfalls of the Vigiagua program presented in this study represent what was observed during the database evaluation and should not be viewed as a criticism, but as an opportunity for improvement.
We believe that the provided information can enhance the awareness and highlight the importance of monitoring toxic chemicals in drinking water as well as in the source waters. The expectation of this study is to positively mobilize different social actors to the issue, to describe, characterize and identify knowledge gaps and, in particular, to protect the health of people and the planet. The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest.
The authors thank the Ministry of Health for providing the data from Sisagua. Domestic water service delivery indicators and frameworks for monitoring, evaluation, policy and planning: a review. The revision; population division. Google Scholar. Global monitoring of water supply and sanitation: history, methods and future challenges. An integrated approach to evaluate emerging contaminants in drinking water. Sep Purif Technol 84 :3—8. Anal Methods 6 — Jardim I, Andrade J. Food Addit Contam 23 11 — World Health Organization.
Risk Assessment Terminology. World Health Organization Lu FC. Acceptable daily intakes: inception, evolution and application. Reg Toxicol Pharmacol 8 1 — Lu FC, Kacew S. Basic Toxicology. Fundamentals, Target Organs and Risk Assessment. Risk assessment. In: Klaassen CD, editor. Perinatal exposure to the fungicide prochloraz feminizes the male rat offspring. Toxicol Sci 85 2 — Neto MLF. Water: Regulation Development. Australian Drinking Water Guidelines 6. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 21 3 —8. Determination of pharmaceuticals, personal care products, and pesticides in surface and treated waters: method development and survey.
Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 20 8 — Pesq Agrop Bras 37 5 — Bioluminescent yeast estrogen assay BLYES as a sensitive tool to monitor surface and drinking water for estrogenicity. J Environ Monit 13 — Potential endocrine disruptor activity of drinking water samples.
Endocrine Disruptors 3 1 :e— ISO practical benefits of implementing a quality system. PubMed Abstract Google Scholar. Guidelines for Drinking-Water Quality. Talanta 79 3 — Needs for reliable analytical methods for monitoring chemical pollutants in surface water under the European water framework directive. J Chromatogr A 3 — In: Coletiva AbdS, editor.
Pharmaceuticals and endocrine disrupting compounds in US drinking water. Environ Sci Technol 43 — Analysis and occurrence of pharmaceuticals, estrogens, progestogens and polar pesticides in sewage treatment plant effluents, river water and drinking water in the Llobregat River basin Barcelona, Spain. J Hydrol — Pharmaceuticals and personal care products in the environment: what are the big questions? Environ Health Perspect 9 —9. Actions undertaken by the ORP since , as part of its mission and in support of various national plans, have produced a wealth and diversity of results.
Since June , the ORP website has provided the general public with the available data on pesticide residues in the environment and the current state of knowledge on exposure. This site can be used to view the current regulations and the measures taken by the public authorities for learning about and controlling exposure to pesticide residues. This symposium demonstrated that even today, it is still difficult to characterise the exposure of the general or occupational populations.
The aim of this work, conducted by three study groups composed of experts toxicologists, epidemiologists, risk assessors, environmentalists, etc. Work in this area is organised along four lines:. These actions also contribute to the work being conducted within the framework of Ecophyto On the basis of this current work and in addition to its historic missions, the ORP continues its activities to improve accessibility to environmental contamination data and assess the exposure of populations to pesticides for risk assessment purposes.
An integrated approach, taking into account all sources dietary, environmental, occupational and routes of exposure oral, dermal, respiratory , is preferred in order to estimate the contribution of each source and route to total pesticide exposure.