Meet Emilio Otontiopa: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Response times may be slow due to the wildfires affecting Santa Cruz County and Covid-19. Organic compliance deadlines and inspections will be delayed for businesses affected by these crises. Read the latest updates on the Northern California wildfires, and visit our Covid-19 webpage to find pandemic-specific information »

Los tiempos de respuesta serán lentos debido a los incendios forestales afectando al condado de Santa Cruz y COVID-19. Los plazos de cumplimiento orgánico y las inspecciones se retrasarán para los negocios afectados por estas crisis.  Lea las últimas actualizaciones sobre los incendios forestales del norte de California y visite nuestra página web de Covid-19 para encontrar información específica a la pandemia »

The Future Organic Farmer Grant winners were judged to have the strongest combination of commitment to leading a lifelong career in organic agriculture, investment and participation in the organic community, and dedication to growing the organic movement. Each grant recipient will receive $2,500 to apply toward their studies in organic agriculture. 

Find out how to apply for your own Future Organic Farmer Grant.

Learn more about supporting the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund through a donation.

Emilio Otontiopa was born on a ranch in Hildago, Mexico and began farming at age 11 growing beans, corn, cilantro, and squash. He immigrated to the United States when he was 19, and did irrigation for large farms. He went on to be an artichoke harvester, which was very hard work.

Otontiopa wants to grow crops for people in his area so there is organic local food and fresh vegetables. He wants people to know where their produce comes from and how it is being grown, which is of great benefit to him and his people. Otontiopa would also like to teach his children how to grow food organically. That’s what he would like to leave as legacy for his children, so they have that motivation to grow healthy food.

Otontiopa wants to pursue a career in organic agriculture for his family, himself, and his community.

Congratulations Emilio!

Please join us in congratulating the recipients of the CCOF Foundation’s Future Organic Farmer Grants.

The Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund 2017 grants were made possible by the generous support of CCOF, the UNFI Foundation, the CCOF Processor/Handler Chapter, the Clif Bar Family Foundation, Dr. Bronner’s, Driscoll’s, Duncan Family Farms, Frey Vineyards, Frontier Co-op, Heath & Lejeune, Gary and Meg Hirshberg, Lost Republic Distilling Co., Organic Valley, SunRidge Farms, and True Organic Products, Inc. Thank you to these organizations for helping us inspire the next generation of organic farmers!

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Today, less than 1% of America’s farmland is organic, and farmers who want to transition their land face a long and costly process. Hear from CCOF's CEO Kelly Damewood about what we're doing to address this challenge:

One percent