From Field to Forum

Written by Jon Knapp on Monday, May 18, 2015 on


Grocery Bags

We are in the final stretch of voting for the New Leaf Community Markets Envirotokens boards and we need your help! Each year CCOF competes for a spot on these boards. Every time a customer brings their own reusable bag at New Leaf store locations, they are awarded a 10¢ token to donate to a local nonprofit. To qualify for the boards, these nonprofits are required to maintain a goal of helping the environment and conserve resources. CCOF proudly adheres to this requirement. We are honored to have been included on these boards for many years. Envirotoken donations support CCOF’s education and...
Written by Laura McKissack on Monday, May 18, 2015 on events, help and tips, marketing


Calendar

Did you know that ccof.org has an online submission for agricultural and organic events? The CCOF community calendar has trainings, webinars, and other opportunities for the organic industry. Partner organizations can submit their events for the calendar. Events are also highlighted in our weekly newsletter. It’s easy and fast! Share your event with our membership today.
Written by Laura McKissack on Monday, May 4, 2015 on cost share, fees, financial assistance, funding


The National Organic Certification Cost Share Program is now open for 2015 applications! This means that all certified organic entities in the United States are eligible to apply for a refund of 75% of their certification-related costs, including inspection fees, up to a maximum of $750 per certification or certified scope. CCOF is standing by to help members with documentation required by the state, including receipts for fees paid to CCOF and verification that you are certified. CCOF encourages all members to apply for the refunds; whether your operation needs the funds or not, applying...
Written by Jon Knapp on Monday, May 4, 2015 on

Each year CCOF competes for a spot on the New Leaf Community Markets Envirotokens boards, and we need your vote! Every time a customer brings their own reusable bag at New Leaf store locations, they are awarded a 10¢ token to donate to a local nonprofit. To qualify for the boards, these nonprofits are required to maintain a goal of helping the environment and conserve resources. CCOF proudly adheres to this requirement.   We are honored to have been included on these boards for many years and we need your help to remain a recipient of these donations. Envirotoken donations support CCOF’s...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Monday, May 4, 2015 on NOSB

Apply today to fill one of five openings on the National Organics Standards Board (NOSB). Applications are due June 15, 2015. About the NOSB The NOSB is a 15-member volunteer board that gives recommendations to the Secretary of Agriculture related to the implementation of the federal Organic Foods Act. The board recommends what substances should be allowed in organic production, helps develop organic standards, and provides other guidance on organic production and handling regulations. NOSB members are appointed for five-year terms and are expected to attend meetings twice a year, participate...
Written by Jessy Beckett on Monday, April 27, 2015 on CCOF Foundation, education, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, grants


Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund

We want you to apply for the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund! The fund is open between now and May 15, 2015. Join the ranks of organic students and teachers across the country who are studying and learning about organic agriculture. Join the CCOF community of Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund awardees and support your classroom projects and academic and vocational studies! K-8th Grade: Look at Agriculture… Organically! Grants It's never too soon for teachers to spark their students' interest in organic! We will be awarding 20 grants of $1,000 for K-8 classrooms nationally through a...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, April 20, 2015 on CalCAN, policy

CalCAN is excited to announce our leadership in a newly introduced state bill called the Agriculture Climate Benefits Act, or Senate Bill 367. The bill was introduced by Senator Lois Wolk (D-Yolo County), and is co-sponsored by CalCAN and our coalition partner, the Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF). SB 367 promotes ‘climate-friendly’ agricultural practices that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and/or store carbon. It creates a new statewide competitive grant program, to be administered by the California Department of Food and Agriculture, that would receive $50 million in cap-and-...
Written by Jon Knapp on Monday, April 20, 2015 on genetic engineering, Non-GMO & More seal

Organic is always non-GMO–and so much more. Our certified members are held to a high standard of keeping their products GMO-free. CCOF conducts yearly inspections to ensure organic integrity and integrates GMO testing in addition to pesticide residue testing efforts. GMOs are strictly prohibited by the national organic standards, plus organic agriculture provides a long list of other benefits for healthy people and a healthy planet. Studies show that organically-grown food has higher amounts of Vitamin C, magnesium, phosphorous, and iron–all vital nutrients for healthy functioning bodies. In...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Monday, April 20, 2015 on NOP, NOSB, policy

The spring 2015 National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) meeting will be held April 27-30 in La Jolla, California. All CCOF members are encouraged to attend! This biannual meeting impacts what materials are allowed for use in organic production. After reviewing public comment and hearing testimony at the meeting, NOSB will make recommendations on standards and materials to the National Organic Program (NOP). NOSB will review a diverse set of materials at the meeting such as from sulfur and copper materials used in crop production, aspirin and iodine used in livestock production, and flavor and...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, April 13, 2015 on CalCAN, events, policy

The 4th Climate & Agriculture Summit at UC Davis was, by all accounts, CalCAN’s most successful Summit yet. The daylong gathering on March 25 brought together 320 participants, including 65 farmers and ranchers from across California. Our 60+ speakers, panelists, moderators and poster presenters were uniformly excellent, demonstrating the amazing diversity and expertise of CalCAN’s partners and friends. Overall, the 4th CalCAN Summit was a testament to how far we have collectively come in our work to unleash agricultural solutions to climate change—and an important reminder of the...
Written by Jessy Beckett on Monday, April 6, 2015 on CCOF Foundation

The CCOF Foundation is excited to unveil new and improved webpages within the ccof.org site. Visit us and check out the in-depth description of our four programs (Future Farmer Grant Fund, Organic Training Institute, Consumer Education, and Bricmont Hardship Assistance). Visit the Organic Training Institute events page where you can register for upcoming field days, workshops, and webinars. Our Bricmont page has information about our 2015 hardship assistance program and our consumer education page has information about our consumer education cards. In particular we would like to highlight our...
Written by Jane Sooby on Monday, March 30, 2015 on policy

UC Berkeley researchers need farmers for a study on diversified farming systems in California’s Central Coast. The project will look at how agricultural practices on organic farms affect the diversity of life found on those farms, with an emphasis on birds and pollinators. The study needs farmer participants who grow organic strawberries on two acres or more of land in Santa Cruz, Watsonville, Prunedale and Salinas. Benefits of cooperating on the project include:  Access to research results about your own farm and all participating farms collectively (with complete anonymity) that can inform...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Monday, March 30, 2015 on NOSB, policy

The April 7, 2015 deadline to submit comments to the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) is fast approaching! At the end of April, the NOSB will meet in La Jolla, California to review organic materials and standards. During this meeting they will review a substantial amount of materials, including copper and sulfur products for use in crop production, and gums and pectin for processing. Your operation may be affected! There are two simple things you can do to help protect the integrity of organic standards: 1) Complete OTA’s Online Surveys CCOF is working closely with the Organic Trade...
Written by Jane Sooby on Monday, March 30, 2015 on genetic engineering, policy

The deadline for comment has been extended to May 11, 2015. The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture (USDA) is soliciting comments on a set of proposed activities to reduce the impacts of the unintended presence of genetically modified (GM) genes in organic and other non-GM crops. One of the activities is the federal organic farmer survey currently circulating, which is gathering information on economic losses experienced by organic farmers due to the presence of GM material in their crops. The timeline for comment is quite short; they are due April 10, 2015. To submit a comment, visit regulations.gov...
Written by Jane Sooby on Monday, March 30, 2015 on certification process, cost share, policy

Certification cost share is a program that reimburses organic operations 75% of eligible certification-related costs up to a maximum of $750 per certified scope. Certification cost share is now open in the state of California and will be in other states soon. CCOF is preparing helpful instruction documents and tools to help you navigate the cost share forms. Look for them by May 1! Certification cost share helps keep organic certification accessible for all, from the smallest to largest organic operations. Cost share distributes federal funds through state departments of agriculture. Click...

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