Organic News

Musings from the Office of Partnership Development

By Lola Dannehl-Schickman, Development and Partnerships Manager, OFRF

Two weeks into January, while madly preparing for our 22nd annual all organic benefit luncheon at EXPO West, I heard the perky ping of my phone’s text message app—breaking my concentration and pulling me out of the spreadsheet of budgets and tracking that so desperately needed my attention. I dove for my purse—the noise had to stop—what could be this important? 

OFRF Awards First Soil Health Research Grant of 2019

April 16, 2019 – OFRF announced the first of five grants the organization will award this year focused on the most pressing challenges facing organic farmers and ranchers today. The grant is funded in part by a match from the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) aimed at funding research related to improving soil health and reducing the environmental impacts of agriculture.

OARF Presentations Now Available Online

Recordings from the 2019 Organic Agriculture Research Forum held in February are now posted. There are 15 sessions covering a wide range of topics available to view here.

Thanks to eOrganic for recording the sessions and making them available!

 

OARF Scholarship Recipients Share Experiences

We were thrilled to offer scholarships to attend our Organic Agriculture Research Forum in February and wanted share feedback we received from some of the recipients. Thanks once again to Ceres Trust for funding the scholarship program. As you will see from the comments below, their investment yields a strong return in the continuing education of both farmers and researchers.

Insects are Vanishing. Help Them by Eating Organic.

By Lauren Snyder, Research & Education Associate, OFRF

As I was eating my breakfast this morning, I looked out the window and caught a glimpse of a bobcat passing through our field. It was such an incredible way to start the day; feeling inspired by nature and grateful to live in such a beautiful environment. However, my cheery mood quickly evaporated when I got to the office and skimmed the latest headlines. These days, it seems every time we open our devices, we are confronted with another bleak article explaining that “we’re going to hell in a handbasket,” as one of my mentors likes to put it.

22nd Annual Luncheon at Expo West Raises Over $100,000

March 7, 2019 – Despite the rain and wind that blew through Southern California yesterday, hundreds of organic supporters made their way to the National Grove of Anaheim for OFRF's all-organic luncheon. The meal, the people, and the atmosphere make this traditional kick-off to Expo West a much-loved tradition. The event raised over $100,000 for OFRF's research, education, and advocacy programs. We are deeply grateful to everyone who attended and to all of the supporters that made this event a success.

OFRF at MOSES

By Michael Stein, Policy Associate, OFRF

 

Going to the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) conference is an eye-opening experience every year and an opportunity to interact with Midwest organic farmers, beginning farmers, and those interested in transitioning to organic production. MOSES also brings together people from across the organic community, from lobbyists to activists, to billion-dollar organic companies.

Current Research and Future Priorities Focus of OFRF Forum and Listening Session

OFRF would like to thank the researchers, farmers, and educators who participated in our sessions at Organicology in Portland last week. We couldn’t have done it without you! All of the presentations were first-rate—from improving the ability of growers to produce organic seed, to the wonders of barley—a plethora of new information and thoughtful discussion was shared at our Organic Agriculture Research Forum on Saturday.

Brise Tencer Joins ASI Board

Newly appointed to the External Advisory Board of the UC Davis Agricultural Sustainability Institute (ASI), OFRF Executive Director Brise Tencer was introduced at the annual meeting in January in Davis, California.

 

“As a member of the ASI Board, I am honored to have this opportunity to represent the needs of the organic community,” said Tencer, adding that she looks forward to seeing organic initiatives and education grow within the UC system.

FFAR Awards Matching Funds for OFRF’s 2019 Research Grants

OFRF’s research program got a big boost thanks to a matching grant from the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR). The $66,000 match will be used to support OFRF’s 2019 organic research grant awards related to soil health, including carbon sequestration, reduced tillage systems, and fertility management focused on reducing environmental impacts and improving soil health.

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