Oregon Tilth Supports Organic Hazelnut Grower Challenges and Opportunities
On August 15, Oregon Tilth joined the Organic Hazelnut Growers Association for farm tours and knowledge-sharing around challenges facing the farmers in the region.
From the Capital Press:
Without access to most chemical sprays, organic growers have to be creative in battling the multitude of pests and diseases that can afflict the crop, according to speakers.
“You really can’t just do it for the return. It’s a different system of farming if you’re not used to it,” said Drew Katz, transition coordinator for Oregon Tilth, an organic certifier.
Apart from agronomic considerations, processing is another complication for organic hazelnut growers.
The options for “custom processing” are currently limited due to the small volume of organic hazelnuts, which is why the Organic Hazelnut Growers Association is looking at options for a dedicated facility.
To maintain her crop’s organic status, farmer Linda Perrine must use an accredited organic pasteurizer, processor and commercial kitchen.