Don’t Get Caught Wearing Non-Organic Cotton Around Neil Young

neil young

Hey, hey, my, my.  Neil Young is going a little bit Crazy Horse about ditching non-organic cotton.

On his recent European tour, the rocker treated some fans to free organic cotton T-shirts. They came with a caveat though: “I’m hoping that when you wear your PROTECT/EARTH T-shirt, you will vow to PROTECT EARTH and to take a stand for EARTH in the ways that you can,” Young wrote on his website.

According to Ecouterre, Young is personally making sure his concert merchandise is now all made from organic cotton because he says non-organic cotton is extremely damaging to the planet. And he’s not wrong. It’s the most pesticide-intensive commercial crop. He wrote on his website: “In the U.S., it takes about 1/3 of a pound of pesticides and herbicides to grow enough conventional cotton for just one T-shirt,” he said. “The Environmental Protection Agency considers seven of the top 15 pesticides used on cotton in the United States as “possible,” “likely,” “probable,” or “known” human carcinogens (acephate, dichloropropene, diuron, fluometuron, pendimethalin, tribufos, and trifluralin). These chemicals absorb into the soil which can affect nearby crops, get into water supplies and rivers and affect many lifeforms downstream.” It ain’t no trip to Sugar Mountain. And Young is really amped up about it for good reason.

He also came out as pro-hemp, which is also a much healthier alternative to non-organic cotton, but since it’s not as widely available currently, he encouraged opting for organic cotton instead. It’s the “wiser option,” he said. Seems like Young has a Heart of Gold when it comes to the planet and our farmers.

Find Jill on Twitter @jillettinger

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image via Neil Young official Facebook page

Jill Ettinger

Jill Ettinger is a Los Angeles-based journalist and editor focused on the global food system and how it intersects with our cultural traditions, diet preferences, health, and politics. She is the senior editor for sister websites and, and works as a research associate and editor with the Cornucopia Institute, the organic industry watchdog group. Jill has been featured in The Huffington Post, MTV, Reality Sandwich, and Eat Drink Better.