Oregon Tilth develops USDA integrity training on natural resources and biodiversity
Oregon Tilth partnered with the USDA National Organic Program’s Organic Integrity Learning Center (OILC) to develop new training on natural resources and biodiversity.
Farm activities can be destructive and harmful to wildlife and natural resources. But organic farms are required to protect our ecosystems.
OILC wanted training for certifiers and inspectors on best practices to evaluate how organic farms preserve natural resources and biodiversity. While inspectors and reviewers are skilled in technical farm production, it can be tricky to identify if a farm activity is adversely impacting resources like waterways, wetlands, or wildlife.
Oregon Tilth was tasked with designing several on-farm scenarios to give inspectors tools and a better understanding of what to look for. Drawing on 10+ years of partnership with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, we share key questions to ask to get better data. And we help evaluators with finding the best indicators that tell a deeper story of if a conservation practice is working or not.
“Each organic farm is a safeguard for the natural resources we depend on. This training helps the people on the frontlines of organic integrity. They learn about how to integrate and evaluate conservation practices across the whole farm,” said Sarah Brown, Oregon Tilth’s education and advocacy director.
Learn more about this new Organic Integrity Learning Center course and other training to protect organic.