Soil Association Principles

Abaca is an organic business that is certified by the Soil Association. Lots of people say, “ But you don’t really need certification do you? You can just use materials that people say are organic” This is something that we often hear, especially about wool, so I’d like to take this opportunity to describe why organic certification is so important.

The Soil Association’s work is based on four principles:

The Principle of Health – Organic agriculture should sustain and enhance the health of soil, plant, animal and human as one and indivisible.

The Principle of Ecology – Organic agriculture should be based on living ecological systems and cycles, work with them, emulate them and help sustain them.

The Principle of Fairness – Organic agriculture should build on relationships that ensure fairness with regard to the common environment and life opportunities.

The Principle of Care – Organic agriculture should be managed in a precautionary and responsible manner to protect the health and well-being of current and future generations and the environment.

Farming is one of the most basic activities that we carry out as human beings. We all have to eat! But all sorts of other things are embedded in agriculture. Our history, culture and community values are closely aligned to the way we farm our land. The landscape is a product of the way that generations of farmers have cultivated our countryside.

The Soil Association’s principles apply to agriculture in the broadest sense, including the way people tend soils, water, plants and animals in order to produce, prepare and distribute food and other goods. They concern the way people interact with living landscapes, relate to one another and shape the legacy of future generations.

Organic is so much more than the absence of chemicals … it’s a profound concept that enables a harmonious interaction between man and the land, an interaction that has long reaching consequences for us and for future generations.