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Complimentary Consumer Education Cards!

Are your customers confused about what organic means? Order a complimentary batch of the 2018 “Why Buy Certified Organic?” postcards today! The cards include information for consumers about what organic means and why it’s important to buy organic products.
 
In 2017, Fresno Commons, “a for-profit corporation and non-profit land trust, working to grow vibrant, community-owned local food system in the Fresno and San Joaquin Valley,” ordered cards to include in their CSA boxes to help educate their customers about the benefits of buying organic. 
 

Confused by the Word “Organic” on Fertilizer Packages?

Many fertilizers and some herbicides and pesticides are labeled as “organic,” even though they aren’t allowed for use in organic production. These products are using the word “organic” as a chemist would, meaning they contain carbon compounds. The USDA only restricts the use of the word “organic” on food products, which allows companies to put whatever they choose on an input label as long as it is factual. This does not mean that the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) has approved these inputs for use in organic production.
 

Congressman Garamendi Cosponsors Organic Integrity Bill

Congressman John Garamendi (D-CA-3) joins fellows California Congressional delegates in supporting organic integrity with his cosponsorship of the Organic Farmer and Consumer Protection Act of 2017, H.R.3871.
 
H.R.3871 would ensure a fair playing field for organic producers and protect consumer trust in the organic seal by strengthening the USDA National Organic Program’s oversight of domestic and international organic production.
 

Congressman LaMalfa Supports Organic Farmers in 2018 Farm Bill

Last week, Congressman Doug LaMalfa (R-CA-01) took action to support his organic constituents when he signed on as a cosponsor of H.R.3871, the Organic Farmer and Consumer Protection Act. 
 

Congressman LaMalfa Talks Farm Bill with Organic Producers

When Congress takes its August recess and Members go home to their districts, it’s a great time to meet with them directly. This year, it’s an especially good time for farmers to express their thoughts directly on the farm bill coming for renewal in 2018. This week I had the pleasure of sitting in with organic growers from Butte County, California when they met with their Congressman Doug LaMalfa (R-Oroville).
 

Cooperative Extension in Salinas Responds to Reports of “Red” Aphids in Organic Romaine

A recent blog post by Alejandro Del Pozo-Valdivia, UC Cooperative Extension entomologist based in Salinas, addresses reports he’s received about “red aphids” being found in organic romaine lettuce varieties that are resistant to the lettuce aphid.
 
Laboratory analysis showed that the “red aphids” were not lettuce aphids, but were actually either potato aphids or foxglove aphids. 
 

Cost Share Organic Certification Fee Refund Application Period Still Open

The National Organic Certification Cost Share Program is still open for 2017 applications, but only a few months remain to apply for funds. Through this program, eligible operations will be reimbursed up to 75% of their organic certification costs, not to exceed $750, for each NOP scope of organic certification. Eligible operations can also receive a refund of California State Organic Program registration fees. Any operation that is located within the United States and received organic certification between October 1, 2016 and September 30, 2017 may apply for reimbursement.

Crop Insurance Options for Organic Farmers and Ranchers

New U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) crop insurance programs have expanded risk management options for organic farmers and ranchers. Are you curious to know what programs might be a good fit for your operation? 
 

Deadlines Approaching for NOSB Jacksonville Meeting

The deadlines to submit public comments and register for oral comments to the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) at their fall meeting in Jacksonville are approaching! It is critical that members of the organic community submit public comments on the substances up for re-listing or removal from the National List of Allowed & Prohibited Substances and the other NOSB agenda items. The votes and discussions in Jacksonville will impact future organic standards and substances allowed in organic production.
 

Discounted FSMA Food Safety Workshop in Santa Rosa, CA

Does your farm still need a supervisor to take a Produce Safety Alliance (PSA)-approved workshop that meets the FSMA training requirement for produce growers?

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