Organic Cotton vs Conventional Cotton
Most of the cotton used to make clothing in the fashion industry is conventional cotton, which relies heavily on the use of harmful chemicals such as herbicides, pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. The overuse of such chemicals and their impact on the environment and people's health is concerning to say the least. Pesticide and fertiliser use on cotton has been linked to ground and surface water contamination, and drinking water pollution. At high enough levels in drinking water, nitrates from nitrogen fertilizer are known to cause methemoglobinemia, or "blue baby syndrome," in newborns. Pesticides have also been linked to declining numbers of endangered species.
Organic cotton, on the other hand, is far more sustainable than conventional cotton because it uses natural growing systems to cultivate crops, rather than relying on the use of chemicals. While conventional cotton farmers are reacting to ecological problems that have been caused by Western farming practices, organic farmers work with the land to prevent environmental issues before they occur.