2Bits: Keep Organic Strong—Take a Stand
Every major food company now has an organic division. There’s more capital going into organic agriculture than ever before.
The U.S. organic market currently counts for more than $40 billion in annual sales and includes products imported from about 100 countries. The National Organic Standards Board, part of the National Organic Program, monitors the “USDA Organic” label.
This board, made up of 15 public volunteers, meets twice a year at a public meeting. At these meetings, the board reviews recommendations on production, handling, and processing of organic products, as well as votes on proposals.
As you can imagine, some meetings get very controversial.
Two important topics will be discussed at the upcoming meeting in Jacksonville, FL on October 31, 2017 – November 2, 2017.
- Can produce grown hydroponically (the method of growing plants without soil, using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent) use the organic label?
- How can the monitoring of organic imports be improved?
It is critical that the requirements to use the “USDA Organic” label be clearly understood.
It is costly for farmers to be organically certified. Certification processes should not be adjusted to accommodate the size of a farm or processing facility, nor by political influence. Certification processes should be based on research and best practices to promote and preserve the wellness of the environment, agriculture inputs, and people!
Your input, your voice–farmers, consumers, chefs, and institutional buyers, is requested!
You can easily provide comments to the National Organic Standards Board. Here are the steps:
- Visit the National Organic Program
- Go to the section titled “Written Comments,” or Click on Regulations.gov.
- Click on the “Comment Now” box.
- This will take you to a text box for you to enter your comments. Comments are needed by 10/11/17.