Northern California’s Salinas Valley is often dubbed America’s salad bowl. Large growers there have long relied on thousands of seasonal workers from rural Mexico to pick lettuce, spinach and celery from sunrise to sunset. Many of these workers seem destined for a life in the fields. But a program that helps field workers, like Raul Murillo, start their own farms and businesses is starting to yield a few success stories.
Written for Oregon Tilth by Marian Hammond. Here at Oregon Tilth, we frequently hear from gardeners who are looking for new and better ways to save water while keeping their gardens green and healthy during the dry summer months.
Public Affairs is proud to release its second issue of (ORE)ganic News, a newsletter highlighting sustainable, conservation practices for organic production. This month’s issue features a success story on a Wasco county organic producer, as well as stories on pollinators and methods to promote pollinator habitat.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) published its "National Organic Program (NOP) - Organic Milk Operations" audit report on July 29, 2013. A previous OIG report, published in February 2012, had focused on the oversight and monitoring activities of the NOP and its certifying agents. This audit report focuses on the compliance of organic milk producers.
The National Organic Program (NOP) is pleased to announce draft guidance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This resource addresses how the FDA's "Egg Safety" rule applies to outdoor access areas.
The Organic Center (The Center) this week announced a project to prevent a potential catastrophe now looming over organic apple and pear production in the United States. The goal: to provide the organic farming community critically needed information on how to prevent a disease from decimating apple and pear orchards while maintaining rigorous organic standards.
In a recent USDA Blog article, Secretary Vilsack discusses USDA's contributions to President Obama's Climate Action Plan. For example, USDA now has 7 "regional climate hubs" to provide farmers and ranchers with regionally-appropriate information to adapt to climate change.
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has announced a new pilot program designed to assist farmers transitioning their land or livestock to certified organic status. The program is the first in the nation to provide an incentive for farmers to work with a USDA-accredited organic certifying agency during the transition period, which typically lasts 36 months.
The National Organic Program (NOP) is pleased to announce a new fact sheet summarizing allowed and prohibited substances in organic production and handling. Additionally, USDA invites you to help guide its efforts in an important focus area: water.
Seed growers of Jackson and Josephine Counties have formed the Southern Oregon Seed Growers Association (SOSGA). Founded by practical farmers, the new organization will support those production and improvement of quality agricultural seed in Jackson and Josephine counties of southwestern Oregon.
Selected from a record-breaking 26 nominations, the Organic Trade Association’s (OTA’s) 2013 Organic Leadership Awards will be presented to a passionate couple who have dedicated their lives to organic for almost three decades, a professional farmer who has advanced practices for growing organic tree fruit, and two emerging leaders on a mission to create meaningful opportunities for military veterans in organic.
State officials in Oregon are temporarily restricting the use of more than a dozen pesticide products following the deaths of an estimated 50,000 bumblebees in the Portland area this month. The measure, effective immediately, will last for 180 days while the Oregon State Agricultural Department investigates incidents of a mass bee die-off in the Portland suburb of Wilsonville, and a much smaller die-off in neighboring Hillsboro.
How much time do you spend complying with the documentation requirements in the USDA organic regulations? Your feedback will help us better estimate how much time organic stakeholders spend on recordkeeping and related tasks. We will also use your feedback to guide our efforts related to the Sound and Sensible Initiative.
The Agriculture Department has approved a label for meat and liquid egg products that includes a claim about the absence of genetically engineered products. It is the first time that the department, which regulates meat and poultry processing, has approved a non-G.M.O. label claim, which attests that meat certified by the Non-GMO Project came from animals that never ate feed containing genetically engineered ingredients like corn, soy and alfalfa.
The National Organic Program (NOP) is pleased to share two reports with the organic community: Organic Certification Cost Share Programs Report to Congress & Economic Impact Analysis of Proposed Regulations for Living Conditions for Organic Poultry
The Global Organic Trade Guide, the world’s first user-friendly website designed to help U.S. organic producers and handlers export organic products, was officially launched by the Organic Trade Association (OTA). It features a new Market Data section and the only map tool to communicate global organic trade information in real time.
An interesting paper about the dualism of eco-labels environmental standards with a focus on ISO 14025 Type I labels - Norway and India including Consumer Polls. In the conclusion of the study you find clear statements for GOTS against own national standards: "...critical and urgent for Indian T&C firms to adopt foreign environmental standards in order to have increased market access and to penetrate in a given market say European market" and "that there is a positive relationship between eco-compliance and export volume. If Indian T&C firms adopt foreign environmental standards, then their export volume to Europe increases."
Oregon Tilth's partners at the OSU Small Farms Program have created a website with resources on how to conduct efficient, cost-effective, on-farm composting that promotes compost quality and protects water quality. It's a great resource for farmers who are integrating composting into their operations to enhance on-farm nutrient cycling and fertility management.
In a continued effort to build NRCS awareness and involvement with our organic audience in Oregon, NRCS Public Affairs is proud to introduce (ORE)ganic News, a newsletter highlighting sustainable, conservation practices for organic production.
Maine's state senate easily passed a bill that may one day mandate the labeling of foods containing genetically modified organisms. The law passed 35-0, but before labels are required, five consecutive states must also pass labeling laws.