At OFRF, we continue to work closely with coalition partners to remain aware of the ever-evolving landscape of agriculture policy at the federal level. For this March’s Policy Corner, I wanted to share all of the work we’ve been up to this year and what we’re looking forward to. 

Earlier this month, OFRF submitted comments on the Natural Resource Conservation Service’s (NRCS) Conservation Practice Standards (CPS) and the Agricultural Marketing Service’s Specialty Crop Competitiveness Initiative (SCCI). These are significant opportunities to highlight the conservation and economic benefits related to organic management. You can take a look at our comments on our advocacy page. Please reach out if you have any questions!  

Along with this advocacy related to the executive branch, we’ve continued to be engaged in the legislative process related to our priorities. The Farm Bill, the everlasting gobstopper of a policy topic, continues to lurch from hopeful timelines in the spring to calls to extend the 2018 policies another year. We will continue to engage on this crucial piece of legislation as it is one of the most essential policy-drivers in the United States food system. That’s why we were in DC last month with our partners at the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition. We talked with Representatives and Senators about the importance of organic agriculture research, continuing to build momentum for the Strengthening Organic Agriculture Research (SOAR) and the Organic Science Research Investment (OSRI) Acts.

Similar to the agriculturalists up in the northern part of the country, now is also the time we are planting seeds for FY25 appropriations, even as we rapidly bring a close to the FY24 Agriculture Appropriations process. We’ve been sending detailed requests to legislators’ offices about the impact of organic agriculture research on their districts and states. We have also been busy drafting written testimony that will be submitted to both chambers’ agriculture committees, making sure that the case for expanded organic research is put on record. Lastly and most importantly, we’re scheduling meetings with appropriators to ensure they understand the importance of organic agriculture to their states and the country. Once these documents are submitted, we will share them with you all!

But, looking forward to the rest of the year, we’re excited about the opportunities ahead of us. Coming up later this month is the National Organic Coalition’s fly-in, a crucially important venue for the organic movement to use our voice to raise awareness about the bills and programs important to it. Later in May, we will be at the Organic Trade Association’s annual Organic Week, where we’ll be sharing updates on the state of organic research with organic industry representatives and participating in congressional meetings to bring this information to legislators. 

Something we’re very excited about, though, is the upcoming August recess and the ability to not just tell legislators about the importance and impact of research projects but show them. If your institution or farm is interested in organizing an in-district meeting or field day in August/October, let us know so we can work with you to communicate that opportunity to legislators during recess! We’re also interested in hearing about the logistical and administrative burdens of running a successful field day. Please reach out to me at with insights!

Eat well,