Blog posts by CCOF

CCOF is continuing our services with our staff working safely from home. Although response times may be slower, we are here to support you. We welcome new applications to join the CCOF-certified family. Visit our Crisis Resilience page for updates and crisis resilience resources.
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Written by Laetitia Benador on Monday, June 29, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic

When COVID-19 struck, farmers were already facing significant challenges. Low prices combined with rising production costs, labor shortages, and climate change impacts resulted in 58 percent of California’s farms operating with net losses in 2017. Today, organic farmers and businesses are working around the clock to adjust to new conditions. CCOF compiled this overview based on agricultural and market research and qualitative data from a sample of CCOF producers, processors, and businesses (30 chapter leaders and 192 survey responses). Please let us know if we have missed your experience at...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, June 29, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic, marketing

If there has been anything I have learned from experiencing the response to the COVID-19 pandemic these past few months, it is how amazing my farming community has been in rising up to meet the needs of their community and supporting each other. We make up truly important, interconnected food webs within the local food shed. We may grow different crops, but we all have a strong work ethic and the desire to feed people local food. I believe it is crucial that we see our farmer peers not as competition, but as collaborators working towards the same goal. There is plenty to go around. We are...
Written by Jane Sooby on Tuesday, June 23, 2020 on CCOF, general organic, member news

Jeff Huckaby, president of CCOF-certified Grimmway Farms and Cal-Organic Farms, has received the Organic Trade Association’s prestigious Farmer of the Year award for 2020. Huckaby is a fourth generation farmer who discovered a passion for growing organic carrots over 20 years ago when he first started experimenting with organic practices. He has since led the expansion of Grimmway and Cal-Organic’s organic production to more than 45,000 acres of certified organic vegetables in five states. He is a leader in organic marketing as well, convincing Costco to stock only organic carrots in their...
Written by Kelly Damewood on Tuesday, June 9, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, general organic


Black Lives Matter

Dear CCOF Family,  The unjust killing and systemic oppression of Black lives transcends politics—it speaks to the deepest core of our humanity.  We are deeply disturbed by the unjust murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Nina Pop, Dreasjon Reed, George Floyd, Tony McDade, and David McAtee. We understand that these are the most recent tragedies, and countless Black lives have been lost to racist violence in the United States.  Like all predominantly white communities, CCOF must grapple with its own role in systemic racism. Our agriculture and food systems are built on a history of racism,...
Written by Noah Lakritz on Tuesday, June 2, 2020 on CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic

Applications opened last week for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). CFAP is a USDA program that will provide $16 billion in direct aid to farmers who suffered losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications and payments will be processed through the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA).  CCOF recognizes that this program has structural flaws that will prevent many of our members from accessing desperately-needed financial relief. We are working to advocate for improvements to this program. If you would like to contact us about your experience with CFAP, please email us at policy@...
Written by Rebekah Weber on Tuesday, May 26, 2020 on advocacy, biodiversity, CCOF, general organic, policy, roadmap


I sat down with Farm to Table Talk host Rodger Wasson to discuss why organic matters with him. We dove right into CCOF’s Roadmap to an Organic California, a first-of-its-kind research project that investigates how organic is a solution to California’s toughest challenges. From the climate crisis to economic and health inequities, I walked Wasson through organic’s role in addressing these issues, and more. Let’s consider climate change, for example. We know that organic farms combat climate change because they build healthy soils that store carbon and reduce levels of greenhouse gases in the...
Written by Rebekah Weber on Monday, April 13, 2020 on CCOF, CCOF Foundation, crisis resilience, general organic, we are essential


We Are Essential

“We Are Essential” is a blog series that explores how the organic community is navigating the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Our farms, ranches, and businesses deliver truly essential services, staying open and in the field to provide nutritious food to our communities. Each week, we will share a new story that highlights how organic is critical to the global response. We welcome hearing how you are impacted and invite you to email us at policy@ccof.org. We also have a list of crisis resilience resources to help you weather the COVID-19 pandemic. Resilience is about bouncing back after a...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, April 13, 2020 on CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic

The Organic Trade Association (OTA) recognizes the unique needs of the farmer, rancher, and producer community as it navigates the current pandemic.  OTA’s next COVID-19 webinar on Wednesday, April 15 at 11:00 a.m. PDT will allow you to learn about new and existing programs designed specifically to meet your needs. Organic producers will have the opportunity to speak directly to those who will implement and oversee provisions in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act designed to benefit agricultural operations.  On the webinar will be Katie Naessens, senior...
Written by Guest Blogger on Tuesday, April 7, 2020 on CCOF, crisis resilience, directory, general organic, we are essential


We Are Essential

“We Are Essential” is a blog series that explores how the organic community is navigating the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Our farms, ranches, and businesses deliver truly essential services, staying open and in the field to provide nutritious food to our communities. Each week, we will share a new story that highlights how organic is critical to the global response. We welcome hearing how you are impacted and invite you to email us at policy@ccof.org. We also have a list of crisis resilience resources to help you weather the COVID-19 pandemic.  As an organic farmer for almost two decades...
Written by Rachel Witte on Monday, March 30, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic, policy

As communities come together to build resilience in this deeply challenging time, CCOF is compiling resources that support our members and the organic community. Visit our Crisis Resilience Resources webpage for links to helpful resources for organic businesses. Check back regularly, as we’ll be updating this page with new resources as we learn about them.  We are working with partners, allies, and other organizations to gather useful information for the community. You can help by sharing links to additional resources by emailing policy@ccof.org.  Share with us how COVID-19 has impacted you...
Written by Jessy Beckett Parr on Monday, March 30, 2020 on CCOF, crisis resilience, directory, general organic, services


With the advent of shelter-in-place orders across the United States, many may be looking for new ways to access fresh produce. CCOF’s online member directory allows you to search for organic farmers in your area. CCOF members are hard at work this spring, planting and harvesting healthy organic produce. Many are needing to change their business plans on the fly to adapt to the changes in the restaurant supply chain.   We encourage you to search our online database by city; zip code; or sales method, including Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) for home delivery or pick-up of farm-fresh...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, March 23, 2020 on CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic

California officials issued guidance regarding retail food, beverage, and other service venues. These venues bring people from multiple communities into close contact with each other and have the potential to increase the transmission of COVID-19. “These are aggressive, but necessary actions to protect our communities,” said Governor Gavin Newsom. “We all have a role to play when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19. These establishments that are remaining open should think creatively about how they can continue to provide services to the community. Shifting operations to focus on...
Written by Kelly Damewood on Monday, March 16, 2020 on CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic

La oficina de CCOF en Santa Cruz, California, está temporalmente cerrada, con vigencia inmediata. El personal de CCOF seguirá trabajando desde sus hogares.De acuerdo con las recomendaciones de contención y cuarentena de la Enfermedad por Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) de los Centros para el Control y la Prevención de Enfermedades (CDC) y el Departamento de Salud Pública de California, la oficina de CCOF en Santa Cruz, California, se cerrará de inmediato para ayudar a mantener nuestro personal y la comunidad a salvo del COVID-19. El personal trabajará desde casa mientras la oficina física está...
Written by Kelly Damewood on Monday, March 16, 2020 on CCOF, crisis resilience, general organic

The CCOF office in Santa Cruz, California is temporarily closed to the public, effective immediately. CCOF staff will still be working from their homes.In line with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) containment and quarantine recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and California Department of Public Health, the CCOF office in Santa Cruz, California will be closed to the public effective immediately to help keep our staff and community save from COVID-19.  Staff will be working from home while the physical office is closed to the public. Please note that...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, March 16, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, general organic, policy, roadmap


Photo cred Tommy Martino_Bob Quinn and Liz Carlisle

Tommy Martino, Bob Quinn and Liz Carlisle (left) on the Grain by Grain book tour 2019. As an organic farmer at home in Montana of over 30 years, I see firsthand the bounty created from tending to the land in an organic manner. Butterflies, bees, ladybugs, birds, and countless other creatures are drawn to the land tended organically. Those who work on the soil every day can feel its soft, supple nature underneath their boots. The palpable feeling of health and vitality pouring out of an organic farm is unmatched. That said, there is also science to stand behind the claim that organic is a more...

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