Organic vs. Conventional Fruit Growing

There is constant conversation about the two methods of fruit production. I will address tree fruits in the Ohio River Valley.  First, ask yourself why you want to grow fruit.  If for personal use, I would consider organic methods.  You can store, use or sell any extra blemish free fruit and cut around damaged fruit and press or can the remainder.  By planting disease resistant varieties or old favorites with a healthy reputation, you can get by with few sprays of OMRI approved products or no sprays at all.

The next option is a combination:  use only a few early season chemical applications and then practice good observation and biodynamic methods.

The third option is to follow the OSU agricultural program which involves many chemical applications with a very high yield of perfect fruit.  Commercial growers choose this option because they could not produce enough clean fruit to stay in business with the other options.  A production orchard needs over 90% pack out fruit to stay in business.

Ohio has too many issues with pest pressure and especially late season fungal problems to make commercial organic production a viable option.  However the back yard grower can and should consider the organic approach.

I have attached links to a few studies showing if chemicals appear in fruit or juice.

 

http://whatsonmyfood.org/food.jsp?food=AJ

http://www.decanter.com/wine-news/french-study-finds-pesticide-residues-in–90-of-wines-21199/

http://www.thedailymeal.com/are-there-pesticides-your-wine?_mobile=1

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