Alice Rolls had worked with environmental non-profits for 30 years prior to becoming the Executive Director of Georgia Organics in 2004—a non-profit organization dedicated to connecting Georgia-produced organic food to Georgia families. At that time, there were only 25 certified organic farms in the state.
Organic Dietary Supplements
The Dietary Supplements Council first convened in August 2016 under the leadership of Bethany Davis from FoodState Inc. The aim of the council is to provide a forum for discussing issues, challenges and opportunities related to dietary supplements and to grow the organic supplement sector.
The organic industry has been working on defining and applying animal welfare requirements to the organic standards for over a decade. This work culminated in a final rule released just prior to the Administration change in January. Since that time, the effective date of the final rule has been delayed twice. Accompanying the most recent delay to November 14, the U.S. Department of Agriculture opened a comment period asking the public to weigh in on four options:
Major league baseball player Jayson Werth doesn’t look like an organic farmer—especially when he’s at the plate or in the outfield in his Washington Nationals uniform. But, looks can be deceiving.
The star hitter and outfielder has batted in almost 800 runs, hit more than 200 home runs and helped win a World Series in his now 15-year major league baseball career. He’s kept his eyes on the ball and on his health, and has eaten organic for more than a decade. And for almost a decade now, he’s also been an organic farmer.
Have you ever wondered what exactly this thing called Organic PAC is? What does “It” do, and why is “It” important to the organic industry? Short answer: Organic PAC is one of the most critical tools available to cultivate champions of organic on the Hill in Washington, D.C.
In response to the discovery of fraudulent imports of soybeans from Turkey that violated federal organic regulations, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) National Organic Program (NOP) in June revoked the organic certification of Beyaz Agro—a major Turkish grain exporter. The soybeans in question had been fumigated with aluminum phosphide—a prohibited substance under USDA’s National Organic Program—prior to arrival in the United Sates, yet were sold here as organic.
Engaging with members of Congress and their staff is a critical component to advocating on behalf of organic. The good news is that the Organic Trade Association has an excellent story to tell.
Laura Batcha, Executive Director and CEO of the Organic Trade Association, recently represented industry as part of an invited five-person panel on organic hosted by the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Biotechnology, Horticulture and Research. Other panel participants represented the federal government, the research community, and the production side of organic.
Representatives Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Dan Newhouse (R-WA) and Jimmy Panetta (D-CA) this spring introduced the Organic Agriculture Research Act of 2017, which would invest in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) to meet the needs of the growing organic sector. Sales of organic products in the U.S. reached approximately $47 billion in 2016, and expectations are for continued growth as more consumers choose organic.