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##Organic farming is a method of crop and livestock production that involves much more than choosing not to use pesticides, fertilizers, genetically modified organisms, antibiotics and growth hormones.
Organic production is a holistic system designed to optimize the productivity and fitness of diverse communities within the agro-ecosystem, including soil organisms, plants, livestock and people. The principal goal of organic production is to develop enterprises that are sustainable and harmonious with the environment.
##The world market for organic food has grown for over 15 years. Growth of retail sales in North America is predicted to be 10 per cent to 20 per cent per year during the next few years. The retail organic food market in Canada is estimated at over $1.5 billion in 2008 and $22.9 billion in the U.S.A. in 2008. It is estimated that imported products make up over 70 per cent of the organic food consumed in Canada. Canada also exports many organic products, particularly soybeans and grains.
The Canadian Organic Farmers reported 669 certified organic farms in Ontario in 2007 with over 100,000 certified organic acres of crops and pasture land. This is an annual increase of approximately 10 per cent per year in recent years. About 48 per cent of the organic cropland is seeded to grains, 40 per cent produces hay and pasture and about five per cent for certified organic fruits and vegetables. Livestock production (meat, dairy and eggs) has also been steadily increasing in recent years.