CCOF Blog

Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, February 22, 2021 on CCOF Foundation, future organic farmers


David Robles

Last Thursday, February 18, CCOF held its first fully virtual annual meeting, Cultivate and Nourish. While we look forward to being together again soon, holding this event virtually allowed for unprecedented attendance and participation. Farmers, ranchers, and producers who typically lack time to attend conferences were able to log in from the comfort of their homes and hear directly from CCOF’s CEO Kelly Damewood and CCOF Board Chair Phil LaRocca.David Robles, program manager for food justice organization Food, What?! and former participant in CCOF Foundation’s Future Organic Famer program,...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, February 22, 2021 on CCOF Foundation


Rustic Canyon Family

PHOTO: Josh Loeb & Zoe Nathan, by Rick PoonThe CCOF Foundation is thrilled to announce its newest Visionary-level supporter, the Rustic Canyon Family. This independent restaurant group in Santa Monica, California, features a variety of neighborhood dining destinations in partnership with talented and award-winning leaders in food and wine. Learn more about the family at their website.  Since the 2006 opening of farmers’-market-driven and Michelin-starred Rustic Canyon, the family has expanded to include Huckleberry Bakery & Café, Sweet Rose Creamery, Milo & Olive, Cassia, Esters...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 on CCOF Foundation, education, organic training institute


CCOF now has a YouTube channel! If you are curious to learn how to run a socially distanced drive-through farm stand, get the latest on sustainable produce packaging, or find out what it takes for an organic farmer to get certified as Biodynamic, search no further than CCOF’s YouTube channel.The channel hosts all of the CCOF Foundation’s previous webinars, including topics on organic recordkeeping, food safety for produce growers, and farm business management.Subscribe to the channel to get the latest information on timely topics for organic producers.
Written by Jane Sooby on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 on education, grower

As regional agricultural orders mandate more rigorous nutrient and irrigation management, fine-tuning nitrogen applications is an increasingly important skill for organic growers.To help address this challenge, University of California Cooperative Extension specialists are offering a three-part online workshop, Practical Training on Nitrogen Management in Organic Production of Vegetables and Strawberries, which will be held the first three Tuesdays in March from 9-11 a.m.Over the three sessions, experts will discuss sources of nitrogen and their roles in organic soil fertility and the...
Written by Guest Blogger on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 on advocacy, food safety, grower

When it comes to U.S. agriculture regulations, one size does not fit all. That was the message that Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) and thousands of family farmers delivered ten years ago when the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) began hashing out the new Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Had it not been for that advocacy, FSMA would likely have regulated small family farms the same way it regulates larger corporate growers, and would have buried small farms beneath paperwork.FDA needs to hear the message again. Speak up by February 22!The FDA is again proposing...
Written by Jane Sooby on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 on education, grower

An Organic Agriculture Seminar Series for Growers is offered via Zoom on Tuesdays from 12-1 p.m., now through May 4.University of California Cooperative Extension Small Farms and organic advisor Margaret Lloyd have organized the series aimed at providing useful information on organic topics for growers.Each seminar features a guest speaker and a group conversation with questions from the audience. No pre-registration is required. The Zoom meeting link is the same each week.The series began on January 26 of this year with a talk on biochar. Recordings of past seminars, written summaries, and...
Written by Peter Nell on Monday, February 8, 2021 on CCOF, CCOF Foundation, events


AC 2021

CCOF invites you to enjoy a meal of farmer and poet David Robles’ Enchiladas Placeras at our upcoming annual conference Cultivate & Nourish! Get the recipe and follow along below to learn how David cooks the enchiladas.At Cultivate & Nourish, Robles will join us live from the kitchen and share how the organic family can rebuild our food system for an equitable and healthy future while he creates an organic meal to nourish the body and soul.Register today to join the conversation on February 18!Robles is a passionate young leader in organic farming whose inspiration and drive will...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, February 8, 2021 on CCOF Foundation

In my last blog article, Striking a Balance: A Recipe to Become a Happier Farmer, I wrote in depth about how I reflect on the past season in an effort to make time for personal activities, improve my business, and keep my interest and passion in farming. This week, we take a closer look at staffing and how to delegate responsibilities to lighten your workload.As your business grows, so do your responsibilities. During your first year of farming, you likely fulfilled every role­: business planner, farm laborer, marketer, and administrator. This makes sense when you start small and are getting...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, February 8, 2021 on grower, research

University of California, Davis wants to hear from California dried fruit processors.California is a major producer of dried fruits, and we at UC Davis want to support the production of high-quality dried products. A team of researchers in the Food Science and Technology Department is interested in developing guidance on the best practices to ensure the safety and quality of dried California specialty crops.To support our California dried fruit producers, we need information on the most common industry practices currently being employed for dehydrating. Do you sun dry or use a mechanical...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, February 1, 2021 on advocacy, policy

The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) will be holding stakeholder meetings in February to solicit feedback from the public and agricultural stakeholders on farmer- and rancher-led climate solutions that sequester carbon, reduce greenhouse gases, and enhance biodiversity.“These outreach meetings are essential to ensure we gain information and knowledge from the people who live and work on the land and the organizations that support them,” said CDFA Secretary Karen Ross. “We want to hear from all those interested in discussing farmer- and rancher-led efforts to help ensure...
Written by Rebekah Weber on Monday, January 25, 2021 on advocacy, policy


CCOF Goals

It’s the start of a new year, and CCOF has set a bold, new goal for organic: Thirty percent of California’s farmland will be organic by 2030. We know it will take hard work to get there, but that’s nothing new for organic farmers. Here’s the plan for moving forward in 2021.Expand Opportunities for Small Organic RanchersIn partnership with ranchers, policymakers, and farm and environmental groups, CCOF is working to create economic opportunities for small organic ranches. Expanding on-farm slaughter options for small ranches raising goats, sheep, and swine will strengthen these businesses and...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, January 25, 2021 on CCOF Foundation

In my last blog post, "Reflect, Refine, and Refresh for a Long Farming Career," I talked about the importance of setting boundaries between farming and personal life to sustain a farming business over the long haul. This week, I’ll go into more depth on how I reflect on the past season to make time for personal activities, improve my business, and maintain my passion for farming.A simple way to do this is to grab a piece of paper and a pen and list what did work over the past farming season and what didn't.Nothing is too little or too odd to add to the list. The point is to have all of your...
Written by Rebekah Weber on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 on


organic goals

CCOF envisions a world where organic is the norm, a world where every farmer has access to the tools to build healthy soils and foster biodiversity, a world where every eater has access to fresh, organic food that nourishes the body. To create this world, CCOF has set the ambitious goal of reaching 30 percent of California's agricultural acreage in organic by 2030. Organic as the NormWhy are we working to expand organic acreage in California? Because organic agriculture is a solution to some of the greatest threats we face, from climate change to economic and health inequities. Organic is...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 on CCOF, general organic


Last month, CCOF hosted a virtual screening of the critically acclaimed film Gather, a documentary directed by Sanjay Rawal. Gather tells the stories of Native Americans in the United States reclaiming and reigniting sacred connections to food and land through the traditional teachings of their elders as political, social, and economic forces threaten their ways of life.   Attendees included hundreds of CCOF-certified members, organic supporters, and representatives from the Washington State Department of Agriculture. Gather sheds light on how the shadowed history of food sovereignty, land...
Written by Noah Lakritz on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 on general organic, policy

On January 8, California Governor Gavin Newsom released a $227 billion proposed budget for the 2021–2022 fiscal year. Despite concern over the effect of COVID-19 response on the state's budget deficit, the Governor's proposal includes healthy funding levels for several critical agriculture programs, including the following: $3.75 million ongoing funding to the California Department of Food and Agriculture to support integrated pest management strategies and a new, tiered approach to the pesticide mill fee that taxes pesticides based on toxicity levels$6.7 million for UC Cooperative Extension...

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