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New FDA Guidance on FSMA Qualified Exempt Requirements During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently released a temporary guidance on the requirements that farms must meet to be considered qualified exempt under the Federal Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

Online Sales Opportunities for Farmers Using Sustainable Growing Practices

Farmers are currently facing unprecedented challenges as supply chains quickly and radically change. Our local food systems can be strengthened by building consumer awareness of local farms using sustainable growing practices.
 
Healthy PlanEat is a new online platform for farmers using sustainable growing practices to sell directly to local customers so people can have a healthy and sustainable diet.

Personal Trabajando Desde Casa y Oficina de CCOF Temporalmente Cerrada

La oficina de CCOF en Santa Cruz, California, está temporalmente cerrada, con vigencia inmediata.

Programa Housing for the Harvest se expande a los condados de Kings, Riverside y Tulare, proporcionando vivienda temporal a trabajadores agrícolas expuestos a COVID-19

El Departamento de Alimentos y Agricultura de California (CDFA) anunció hoy que los condados de Kings, Riverside y Tulare participarán en Housing for the Harvest, un programa anunciado por el gobernador Gavin Newsom en julio para brindar opciones de alojamiento temporal en hoteles. para que los empleados de granjas y procesamiento de alimentos se autoaislen si son COVID-19 positivos y no requieren hospitalización, o han estado expuestos y no pueden aislarse adecuadamente en casa.

Resources Available to Farmers Applying to CFAP 2 Relief Program

The USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) is now accepting applications for the second round of funding for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) through December 11, 2020. CFAP 2 features a new payment structure and simplified application process that will likely benefit many organic producers, including those ineligible and those that qualified for little relief in the first round of funding.
 
Farmers and ranchers are eligible to apply for CFAP 2 regardless of whether they received a payment from the first round of CFAP funding.

Resources for Farmers and Ranchers Interested in Applying for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

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.

Risk Management Agency Extends COVID Relief for Organic Industry

Many state and local areas continue to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and may otherwise be unable to meet certain crop insurance policy requirements due to concerns of spreading COVID-19.

Staff Working Remotely and CCOF Office Temporarily Closed

The CCOF office in Santa Cruz, California is temporarily closed to the public, effective immediately.

Straus Family Creamery Weathers Impacts of COVID-19 to Dairy Farmers

photo courtesy of Dawn Heumann for Straus Family Creamery
Photo courtesy of Dawn Heumann for Straus Family Creamery @dawnheumann
 
When asked about how California dairy provider Straus Family Creamery continues to keep their organic producers protected during unprecedented market volatility and consumer purchasing patterns, President Bob McGee responded by saying, “My boss is an organic dairy farmer.” Lucky for their loyal network of consumers, the first-hand perspective of Straus founder and CEO,

Stronger Together: Farmer Collaboration for Increased Sales Avenues

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.

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