September 6, 2018 – By Lauren Snyder, Education and Research Program Associate at OFRF

One of my roles at OFRF is to disseminate information on organic farming practices to diverse audiences. A couple of weeks ago, I traveled to San Luis Obispo to give a presentation on the principles and practices of building soil health at an organic research symposium hosted by Nutrien Ag Solutions, the world’s largest agriculture inputs company. Interestingly, I learned that their crop consultants are increasingly working with organic farmers and Nutrien Ag Solutions has identified a need to expand their knowledge of organic production practices.

For me, this speaking invitation is a clear indication that the organic industry has the ear of large, multi-national organizations that increasingly recognize organic producers as key players in the U.S. food system. Even more heartening is the realization that these companies are listening to the needs of organic farmers, who have identified soil health as a top research priority. I was thrilled to have the opportunity to foster communication between diverse stakeholders in our food system and to broaden my audience beyond researchers and practitioners already established in organic production systems. One of the most exciting aspects of my work at OFRF is the opportunity to interact not only with those who are long-standing players in the field of organics, but also those who are curious to learn more about organic practices and the benefits they can provide to communities and the environment.