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News2021-04-22T20:41:44+00:00

Latest General News

OFRF Asks Congress to Increase Funding for Organic Research

The OFRF policy team has been hard at work advocating for more federally funded organic agriculture research.  Congress is currently in the midst of budget reconciliation, a process that allows them to fast-track legislation related to spending, revenue, the surplus or deficit, and public debt. The current budget resolution calls for $3.5 trillion in spending, and OFRF wants to make sure that organic research receives a share of the increased spending.  More specifically, OFRF has asked members of the House and Senate to support an increase in funding for the [...]

September 8th, 2021|Categories: News|

OFRF Meets with Under Secretary Lester Moffitt to Ask USDA to Prioritize Support for Producers Transitioning to Organic

OFRF and its advisors recently met with organic farmer and newly-confirmed USDA Under Secretary Jenny Lester Moffitt and Senior Advisor Mike Schimdt to discuss the department’s plans to help producers transition to organic production.  USDA Secretary Vilsack has previously announced that the department will spend a couple hundred million dollars to help farmers and ranchers transition to organic. Given OFRF’s research focus and in-depth analysis in the National Organic Research Agenda, OFRF is well-equipped to provide the department with recommendations that will help producers transition to organic farming.   Based on [...]

September 8th, 2021|Categories: News|

OFRF Tours USDA Agricultural Research Service, Rep. Jimmy Panetta to Co-Sponsor ARA

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (SANTA CRUZ, Calif., August 23, 2021) -- Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) hosted Representative Jimmy Panetta’s (D-CA, 20th) congressional staffers at the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) in Salinas, Calif. last week. The site visit focused on the importance of increased investment in organic research and was instrumental in Rep. Panetta’s decision to co-sponsor H.R.2803, the Agricultural Resilience Act (ARA). OFRF organized the tour of the organic fields at the ARS led by Dr. Eric Brennan, USDA Research Horticulturist and the ARS’ only dedicated organic researcher in [...]

August 23rd, 2021|Categories: News, Press Release|

OFRF Staff Participates in Virtual Fly-In to Ask Congress to Bolster Organic

The Organic Farming Research Foundation’s (OFRF) Senior Policy Associate, Trevor Findley, participated in the Organic Trade Association’s (OTA) virtual fly-in, where organic supporters asked members of Congress to support a bill to increase accountability in organic standards.  The National Organic Program is run by USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service and includes a federal advisory committee that makes recommendations to improve and advance organic standards.  This committee, the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), meets twice a year and accepts public input at its meetings.  Since inception, the NOSB has made 20 consensus [...]

August 9th, 2021|Categories: News|

Creating a Southern Soil Health Course

By Shelby Kaplan, OFRF Research and Education Intern She recently graduated from University of Wisconsin Madison with a degree in plant pathology and a minor in food systems. She will continue her studies in the fall at ASU to receive a graduate certificate in food policy and sustainable leadership. As an OFRF intern this summer, I have been working with Thelma Velez, the Research and Education Program Manager, to create a free soil health course titled, Organic Soil Health for the Southern Region. This course builds on a recent OFRF [...]

July 27th, 2021|Categories: News|

Recent Report Recommends Organic Policy Improvements

The Swette Center for Sustainable Food Systems at Arizona State University recently published The Critical To-Do List for Organic Agriculture, which features 46 recommendations that would improve the state of organic agriculture in the United States. OFRF Executive Director, Brise Tencer, and consultants Mark Schonbeck and Ferd Hoefner, were acknowledged for their advice and support in helping formulate the 46 recommendations. While policy-based improvements can be time consuming, the majority of recommendations in the report could be accomplished administratively by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), meaning the USDA [...]

July 16th, 2021|Categories: News|

OFRF Now Accepting Letters of Intent for 2021 Research Grants

July 13, 2021—OFRF is excited to announce that we are now accepting Letters of Intent (LOI) for our research grant program. This grant cycle, in addition to continuing our support for farmer-led research, OFRF is prioritizing applications from early career researchers and Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC). We believe it is critical to foster the next generation of researchers and support historically underserved and marginalized communities, while also ensuring all farmers have the most up-to-date and science-based information. OFRF is reserving half of our grants for BIPOC applicants.  [...]

July 8th, 2021|Categories: News|

Biden Administration and Implications for Organic

By Ferd Hoefner, OFRF policy advisor Right after taking office, President Biden issued an Executive Order on Tackling the Climate Crisis. Among many other things, the Order directed USDA to collect stakeholder input regarding climate change mitigation and resilience within the agricultural and forestry sectors. Specifically, the Order asked USDA to “collect input from Tribes, farmers, ranchers, forest owners, conservation groups, firefighters, and other stakeholders on how to best use Department of Agriculture programs, funding and financing capacities, and other authorities, and how to encourage the voluntary adoption of climate-smart [...]

June 3rd, 2021|Categories: News|

OFRF and NRCS Partner to Provide Education and Outreach on Organic Conservation Practices

February 25, 2021—OFRF and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) form agreement to strengthen conservation partnerships between NRCS field staff and organic producers.

February 25th, 2021|Categories: News, Press Release|Tags: , , , , |

Transforming Agriculture to Mitigate Climate Change and Support Public Health

February 17, 2021—In the current issue of Organic Farmer magazine, OFRF colleagues Lauren Snyder and Cristel Zoebisch explore the connections between agriculture, climate change, and public health.

February 17th, 2021|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

Research Advances Cucumber Lines Resistant to Bacterial Wilt and Downy Mildew

January 14, 2021—In 2019, OFRF provided a second grant to Edmund Frost of Common Wealth Seed Growers to assess resistance to both bacterial wilt and cucurbit downy mildew among selected cucumber seedstocks.

January 15th, 2021|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , |

New OFRF Grant Explores Best Practices for Virtual Peer-to-Peer Farmer Learning

December 17, 2020 - To increase understanding of how virtual peer-to-peer learning can help more farmers increase their knowledge and improve their practices, OFRF has awarded a grant to Sarah Brown at Oregon Tilth.

December 17th, 2020|Categories: News, Press Release|Tags: , , , , |

OFRF and FFAR Fund Research on Enhancing Nutrition of Organic Potatoes While Building Healthy Soils

November 30, 2020 - OFRF and FFAR awarded a grant to Dr. Inna Popova at the University of Idaho to examine effective weed management strategies that promote healthy soils and nutritious potatoes.

December 1st, 2020|Categories: News, Press Release|Tags: , , , , |

Interviews with some of our favorite organic farmers

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