In this far-reaching book, Philip Conford continues the survey of the British organic movement which he began in The Origins of the Organic Movement (2001). This second volume covers the period from 1945 to the mid-1990s, by which point the movement was about to enjoy a much higher public profile than previously. This is the most thorough account of organic history to appear so far.
Wide-ranging but closely detailed, the book begins by examining the ways in which agriculture and food production became increasingly industrialised and technological during the post-war decades. In response to these developments, the organic movement urged an approach to agriculture based on awareness of ecological restraints and of the finitude of natural resources, seeking to co-operate with nature rather than dominate it.
Conford describes the movement's various organisations, journals and leading personalities, looking at their attitude to farming, horticulture, health, science, the environment and consumerism, considering in particular what links them together into a conjoining network. He also discusses the controversial areas of the movement's political and religious affiliations.
The book will interest anyone concerned about Green issues, food quality, and the future of British farming.
Philip Conford (b. 1948) holds the posts of Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Reading and Honorary Visiting Fellow at the University of Leicester. He is a leading authority on the history of the British organic movement, which he has studied for more than a quarter of a century, and his book The Origins of the Organic Movement was published in 2001. He has contributed regularly to the journal The Organic Grower and to the Soil Association's magazine Living Earth, and is on the editorial board of the Association's twice-yearly journal Mother Earth.