Meet Lokelani Intermediate School: A Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund Recipient

Response times may be slow due to the wildfires affecting Santa Cruz County and Covid-19. Organic compliance deadlines and inspections will be delayed for businesses affected by these crises. Read the latest updates on the Northern California wildfires, and visit our Covid-19 webpage to find pandemic-specific information »

Los tiempos de respuesta serán lentos debido a los incendios forestales afectando al condado de Santa Cruz y COVID-19. Los plazos de cumplimiento orgánico y las inspecciones se retrasarán para los negocios afectados por estas crisis.  Lea las últimas actualizaciones sobre los incendios forestales del norte de California y visite nuestra página web de Covid-19 para encontrar información específica a la pandemia »

Since 2014, the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund has partnered with the California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom to administer the Look at Agriculture…Organically! grant program for K-8 teachers who teach their students about organic in the classroom. Each week, visit our blog to hear from the teachers who received Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund grants for their schools about the projects they funded.

Find out how to apply for your own Future Organic Farmer Grant.

Learn more about supporting the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund through a donation.

Lokelani Intermediate School
Kihei, Hawaii

At the start of the semester, when I asked my students to describe what the word “organic” means, most couldn’t do so. Many students were familiar with the word, mentioning that their parents purchase organic products like milk and eggs. Amazingly though, they couldn’t really explain what the label organic meant and/or the benefits it offered. By participating in these three different hands on projects—vermiculture, companion planting, and aquaponics—my students’ understanding of organic agriculture has greatly improved.

Each project in its own way reinforced the important principals that organic agriculture stands for. These projects not only made it obvious what organic agriculture looks like, but also helped them understand the key concepts related to it by bridging key concepts to actual practice. For example, symbiosis with companion planting, decomposition in the worm bin, water quality testing to understand the nitrogen cycle in our fish tanks, etc. The vermiculture project made students more aware about the direct link between the soil and food plants. With the concept in mind that “we ultimately eat what’s in the soil,” students eagerly brought in organic food scraps/eggs shells for the worm bins to build the soil with.

Thank you to Lokelani Intermediate School for sharing your organic project!

Please join us in congratulating the recipients of the CCOF Foundation’s Future Organic Farmer Grants.

The Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund 2016 grants were made possible by the generous support of CCOF, the UNFI Foundation, the CCOF Processor/Handler Chapter, the Clif Bar Family Foundation, Dr. Bronner’s, Driscoll’s, Duncan Family Farms, Forager Project, Frey Vineyards, Frontier Co-op, Green Ox Pallets, Independent Natural Food Retailers Association, National Co+op Grocers, Organic Valley, and SunRidge Farms. Thank you to these organizations for helping us inspire the next generation of organic farmers!

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Today, less than 1% of America’s farmland is organic, and farmers who want to transition their land face a long and costly process. Hear from CCOF's CEO Kelly Damewood about what we're doing to address this challenge:

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