Today, the development of organic farming is an alternative to the conventional farming, which is based on the use of herbicides, chemical supplements and other artificial elements, which may be potentially dangerous to human health. In this regard, the production of organic meat also tends to increase because it starts to compete with the meat produced on the basis of conventional technologies, which include the use of hormones and antibiotics to prevent illnesses of animals and accelerate their growth. The major advantage of the organic meat is its safety to human health. However, the modern agriculture still fails to produce organic meat en masse mainly because of the high costs of the production of such meat and its high price. Nevertheless, the growing environmental concerns of the society and concerns of people about their health and impact of food on their health naturally stimulate the larger consumption and, therefore, production of organic meat.
The development of the organic meat production is closely intertwined with the development of organic farming because the emergence of organic farming paved the way to the totally new standards of the meat production, which were quite different from standards established in the industrial agriculture and meat production. In this respect, it is important to lay emphasis on the difference of organic meat from conventional meat produced within the industrial agriculture. In actuality, organic farming and organic meat are quite different from conventional ones in terms of technologies and products used in the process of feeding animals and their maintenance. To put it more precisely, the conventional farming admits the use of different elements, including antibiotics and hormones which can be potentially dangerous to human health. In addition, the organic meat production is constantly growing and potentially it can increase its share in the market compared to the conventional meat production. In this regard, it is possible to refer to table 1, which shows the production of organic meat in the USA.
The increase of the organic meat production is, to a significant extent, determined by the substantial difference of organic meat from conventional meat and technologies used in their production. At this point, it is important to stress the fact that conventional farming still admits the use of gelatin (rendered from the hooves of cattle and other species), fats, oil, grease and tallow (from cattle and other species), poultry and poultry by-products, rendered pork protein, rendered horse protein (Paull, 15). Potentially the use of these elements in feeding non-organic cattle can be dangerous to human health since they can provoke the deterioration of human health because of various diseases, allergy and other negative reactions of human body on the use of these elements. At the same time, neither of the aforementioned items is used in the organic farming that makes organic meat safe to human health. The main principle of the organic farming is the use of organic, natural elements which cattle can consume in the natural environment, while the use of artificial elements is totally banned.
In such a way, the major benefit of organic meat is the lack o dangerous elements or additives which can threaten to health of consumers.
To put it more precisely, organic meat is free of antibiotics, added hormones, GMO feed and other drugs. Furthermore, animals are not used in the process of feeding of animals used in the production of organic meat. Moreover, some specialists (Guthman, 191) point out more humane treatment of animals in organic farming compared to conventional farming. In fact, conventional farms treat animals like commodities and they are kept in tightly confined pens and often never more than a few feet their whole lives, while organic farming implies natural conditions of life of the cattle and its environment. Hence, the organic farming is characterized by animals free-range and graze. This means that the diet of animals is more well-rounded, while animals are not confined. Instead, they spend more time in fresh air that has a positive effect on the quality of meat and its taste. In addition, the organic farming implies the use of manure to fertilize soil.
Obviously, manure is pure and safe since it is coming from animal fed organic diet. Moreover, the organic farming is environmentally friendly because it does not involve the mass production of meat which implies the use of modern technologies, the consumption of a large amount of fossil fuel, etc. Instead, the organic farming is entire focused on the quality of organic meat and its safety.
At the same time, today, organic farming does not receive such a support as conventional farming. The latter is heavily subsidized by the state. As a result, the organic farming is in a disadvantageous position from the economic point of view. Naturally, in such a situation, the price of organic meat turns out to be substantially higher compared to conventional meat, although the quality of organic meat is much better than the quality of industrial meat which may contain dangerous elements.
In actuality, it is obvious that organic meat is better to human health and safer not only to human health but also to the environment because the organic farming minimizes the use of technologies and elements which can be dangerous to the environment. Consequently, the production of organic meat is likely to grow in the future due to its advantages compared to conventional meat produced in industrial farms. On the other hand, the competition between organic and non-organic persists because the lower price of non-organic meat stimulates its consumption en-masse, while organic farming becomes unavailable to the large part of the population. In such a situation, organic meat has a long way to go to take the larger share of the market.
Thus, taking into account all above mentioned, it is possible to conclude that the development of organic farming, which includes the production of organic meat, steadily increases. The popularity of organic meat is determined by its numerous advantages compared to conventional meat, among which it is possible to single out its safety to human health and environment because organic farming excludes the use of nutrients and elements which can be dangerous to human health and environment. At the same time, the costs of production of organic meat are still very high and its share in the market is lower compared to industrial meat, but, in the future, organic meat can become more popular on the condition of the adequate support of the organic farming from the part of the state.