For many organic producers, organic is a way of life and they can’t imagine farming any other way. Mary Phipps is one of those farmers. She joined the OFRF board in 2021, but has been using OFRF resources for nearly 15 years. “I first heard about OFRF from another organic farmer in our area in 2008 and started using OFRF information on our farm to help us solve the many challenges we were facing. I immediately signed up for the newsletter and have been following along and benefiting from OFRF ever since.”
Mary’s farm, Orchard Pond, is a diversified organic farm in the Red Hills Region of Tallahassee, Florida. They grow produce and honey, and create a number of value added products through their on-farm commercial kitchen. But it isn’t always easy. “There are so many challenges that organic farmers face, so we need as much research and new ideas as possible to help us be successful,” Mary explained.
While she first found OFRF through our education and research materials, OFRF’s federal advocacy is what is most important to her lately. “I’ve been filling out our organic certification cost-share paperwork, so it’s on my mind. USDA’s cost-share program is so critical to our ability to continue and OFRF is working to improve and expand programs – like cost-share – that help farmers succeed.”
Mary’s story is quite common: Farmers need practical information that can help solve on-farm challenges, and increased support from the USDA and Congress. Organic farmers can’t do this alone and OFRF works behind the scenes to help organic farmers thrive.
Mary joined the board because she believes in OFRF’s research, education and advocacy work. Follow Mary’s lead and contribute today! Your gift will be matched dollar for dollar, increasing the impact of your donation. And don’t forget, there are many ways to support OFRF.