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Organic farming decreasing in Costa Rica

Staff writer |
Costa Rica's organic farming area has decreased by more than 30% in just a few years. This fall follows the international economic crisis. The area that was used for organic farming went from 11,115 hectares to 7,448 hectare.

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This trend is due to lower international demand for organic products. This is because people come to prefer organic goods because of an awareness of the environment and the effects of produce on the farmer and the consumer.

These good ideals of caring for the environment and the farmer get pushed aside when money gets tight, as organic products can cost 30% more than the conventional ones. This high cost and low demand might be why Costa Rica only has 2,159 organic farmers.

Other factors affect this number, as well. For instance, to switch from conventional to organic farming, one must wait 3 years and meet many requirements to get the certification.

Bananas, coffee, sugar cane and pineapple are the main products organic farmers harvest, without any chemicals. 69% of those organic products are exported, and only 10% make it to local supermarkets, with the rest being sold at fairs and to restaurants.

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