Faith Grant's picture

More Organic Data = More $ Funding = Healthier Economy!

This week, I discussed the needs / challenges of organic farmers with one of the administrators of the Farm Service Agency (FSA).  A paramount need of organic farmers, both big and small, beginning and established, is access to loans to sustain and expand their operations.  FSA is the primary government agency tasked with making these loans available to farmers.  The challenge is getting an accurate financial picture of an organic farm as the basis to calculate loans.  This requires good price data, and that’s harder to compile for organic farms because their operations are typically more diverse.  

Udi Lazimy's picture

Farm Bill A Campaign Vice

According to the Capital Press, “As the presidential campaign enters its final month, nowhere have the two major candidates’ differences in their approach to government been more apparent than in agriculture policy.”  Whether or not you agree with that statement, it is true that agriculture policy is being used on the campaign trail to highlight our currently troubled state of affairs. Indeed, with Congress failing to pass a 2012 Farm Bill before the expiration of the 2008 five-year bill on Sept.30, a whole lot of farmers are calling for change, and candidates are listening.

Faith Grant's picture

The Risky Business of Growing Healthy Food

This year’s Organic Production Survey is out.  While it is less comprehensive, it does shed light on an important issue that’s overlooked in this Farm Bill cycle:  the need for improved crop insurance options for organic farmers.  Under the current system, organic farmers pay a 5% premium surcharge for crop insurance, but they are reimbursed at 'conventional' rates.  This  means that they pay more to get less.  This provides little incentive for an organic farmer to insure their crops against common risks like drought, insect damage, and weeds. 

Maureen Wilmot in Ohio articulating a very bright future for organic production

Maureen Wilmot will join Ohio State University’s Organic Food and Farming Education and Research (OFFER) autumn symposium, “Future Directions for Organic Agriculture Research.”  The Nov. 1st  symposium is a summit for stakeholders, including farmers, researchers and policymakers, to discuss the future of organic farming and how we can anticipate research and education needs to help producers and processors be successful.  Click here for more information about the event.

emerginC and OFRF partner for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

OFRF is proud to be a part of emerginC 2012 Breast Cancer Awareness Month campaign.
In support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October, emerginC will donate to OFRF 20% of proceeds from the sale of the product below from the Scientific Organics line.  Click here for more info.

Faith Grant's picture

Major Bummer!

The 2008 Farm Bill has officially expired.  Dozens of innovative programs for organic farmers that put healthy, organic food on our tables are in political limbo until Congress returns in November.  That’s a long way off for those of us who fought so hard to build the infrastructure of organic.  We can’t let the organic gains made get lost in the political shuffle after the election.  While some in Washington are saying the impact will be negligible in the near term, organic farmers and members of Congress from agricultural states and districts know better.

Udi Lazimy's picture

Hard to believe that we aren't hurting bad enough...

The 2008 Farm Bill expired yesterday, Sept. 30. As of today, the U.S. is operating without direction for a modern agricultural system driven by unprecedented consumer demand. With an election coming up, Congress has chosen a sketchy path of neither passing a 2012 Farm Bill, nor extending the 2008 Farm Bill. Thus far, Congress has failed to do their job... worse, they have failed American farmers and we'll be paying for it.

Call to Congress: Stop Stalling on Farm Bill

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Organic Phone Flash Mob Sept. 19th! 

If you haven't called yet, please call today.  Congress is waiting until after the election to do anything about the Farm Bill.  We need to urge them to get the job done before the end of the year and to sustain organic programs that are most critical to our health and prosperity.

Udi Lazimy's picture

"Certification Cost Share is crucial..."

When I asked Abby Sadauckas, Organic Farmer and Educator at Bacon Brook Farmstead, what Organic Certification Cost Share means to her, she did not hesitate to share with me how much of an incentive it has been for her to farm organically.

Nor did Abby fail to let me know that as the Educational Programs Coordinator at MOFGA she sees first hand how this 'seals the organic deal' when beginning farmers are deciding whether they can make it as an farm start up.  "This is a time when we really need more farmers to meet organic demand.  Certification Cost Share is essential to helping us meet that demand."
Hard to argue with that.

Stand up for and other organic farmers who deliver us healthy food.  Join us in America's First Organic Phone Flash Mob!

Faith Grant's picture

'DO NOTHING' is Doing Something VERY WRONG!

Letting the current Farm Bill expire and then taking up the 2012 bill after the November election,  would be a very risky and very irresponsible strategy (again with my understatements!).  Surprise, surprise... this is actually being considered on the Hill.

Hmmm... let's ponder a couple questions here:

First, why would Congress even consider letting the Farm Bill expire? 


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