Blog posts by CCOF Foundation

Written by Shawna Rodgers on Tuesday, October 15, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic


Jacob Pechenik, photographed by Claire Schaper

Photo credit: Claire Schaper and Max Wanger Jacob Pechenik of The Farm Project and Lettuce Grow will keynote the CCOF Foundation Feast at the Organic Grower Summit. Save seats for you and your team today!   On Wednesday, December 4, the CCOF Foundation will celebrate the collaborative effort to advance organic for a healthy world. Since 2014, the Foundation has granted more than $600,000 to the next generation of organic farmers and producers, nearly $100,000 to organic businesses that have experienced hardship, trained thousands of professionals through the Organic Training Institute, and...
Written by Peter Nell on Tuesday, October 1, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF, CCOF Foundation, general organic, policy, research

Earlier this year, CCOF Foundation launched the Roadmap to an Organic California project to highlight how organic farming addresses many of California’s toughest challenges. From climate change and water degradation to public health threats and struggling local economies, organic agriculture is a proven solution.    The Benefits Report presented over 300 peer-reviewed scientific studies showing how organic agriculture positively impacts the economy, society, and the environment. These studies demonstrate that organic farms are combatting climate change by building healthy soils that store...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Tuesday, October 1, 2019 on CCOF Foundation, education, events, general organic

Are you interested in growing organically, but mystified by the organic certification process?  Join the CCOF Foundation on Monday, October 14 for a webinar that will explain the benefits, costs, and steps of the organic certification process for growers who market directly to consumers.  Some local producers grow and sell organic crops to increase their revenue. Other farmers find the USDA organic seal a convenient way to communicate their farm’s commitment to sustainable growing practices to their customers. Our webinar speaker, Rebecca Silver of CCOF Certification Services, will highlight...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Tuesday, September 24, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic, policy


Karen Klonsky Ecuador B

Dr. Karen Klonsky spent a lifetime championing organic. The CCOF Foundation will honor her work and spirit at the CCOF Foundation Feast on December 4 at the Organic Grower Summit.  Klonsky was a University of California Cooperative Extension Specialist in Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of California, Davis (UC Davis). For 35 years, Klonsky collaborated with both Californian and international agricultural stakeholders. She is said to have had a willingness to work collaboratively with colleagues, bringing a dynamic range of perspectives and unique experiences to offer in...
Written by Peter Nell on Tuesday, September 24, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF, CCOF Foundation, general organic, policy, research

The CCOF policy team is in the midst of researching and writing recommendations for the second phase of the Roadmap to an Organic California project. The project presents the research-supported benefits of organic agriculture  and recommends policies that address California’s toughest challenges. From climate change and water degradation to public health threats and struggling local economies, organic agriculture is a proven solution.  Phase one of the Roadmap, the Benefits Report, was released in early 2019 and represents a comprehensive scientific review of the economic, social, and...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Monday, September 16, 2019 on CCOF Foundation, education, food safety, general organic, services

Is your produce farm subject to a Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) inspection, but you aren’t quite sure what to expect? Do you have questions about FSMA compliance, but don’t know who to ask?  Join the CCOF Foundation, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), and Community Alliance with Family Farmers and the Farmers Guild (CAFF/FG) on September 24 for a webinar that reviews how the FSMA Produce Safety Rule inspection process works in California, as well as shares FSMA resources for organic produce growers. CDFA has started its FSMA inspections of produce farms. Produce...
Written by Noah Lakritz on Monday, September 16, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, drought, financial assistance, general organic, help and tips

Enrollment for the USDA Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+) began on September 11, 2019. More than $3 billion is available for producers affected by natural disasters in 2018 and 2019. Producers in 29 California counties are eligible for relief, including prevented planting payments for those unable to plant eligible crops in 2019. Crops that qualify for federal crop insurance or Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) coverage are eligible for the WHIP+ program.  Consult the list of counties eligible for 2018 and/or 2019 relief. Read more about program eligibility...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, September 16, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, education


Valent CCOF

We study, we practice, and we hope to find success in our chosen fields. For those working in organic agriculture, those fields are both literal and figurative.  After the initial elation—and subsequent shock—of starting your organic farming business, comes the day-to-day tasks. Gone are the days of acquiring permits from the county and spending day in and day out trying to get your business off the ground. You have launched. Your modus operandi has made a sudden and dramatic shift. You’re selling at farmers’ markets, your products have been picked up by retailers, and your business starts to...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, August 26, 2019 on CCOF Foundation, events, funding, general organic


CCOF Foundation Feast

Monterey calls organic growers near and far this coming winter for the Organic Grower Summit on December 4 and 5. Alongside holiday décor and the sounds of seagulls, seals, and soil health discussions, the CCOF Foundation will once again host its annual benefit dinner on December 4, 2019. A three-course certified organic meal, live music, and powerful keynote speakers await you and your colleagues.  Secure seats for you and your team by registering for the CCOF Foundation Feast at the Organic Grower Summit website today! Space is limited. Each ticket sold will directly benefit the CCOF...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Monday, August 19, 2019 on CCOF Foundation, education, food safety, general organic, standards

Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) inspections started this year for large produce farms in California and across the United States. Smaller produce farms will be subject to FSMA inspections in coming years.  If you are still wrapping your head around what FSMA means for your produce farm, the CCOF Foundation’s webinar library hosts a thorough collection of FSMA and food safety webinar recordings. Often hosted in collaboration with Community Alliance of Family Farmers and the Farmers Guild, these webinars present food safety in a manner accessible to growers and agricultural professionals. ...
Written by Peter Nell on Monday, August 19, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, general organic, policy

The Ceres Community Project, a nonprofit that promotes the production of and access to healthy, sustainable food as the foundation of health, released a new report describing their efforts to advance policy and systems change to support a healthy, just, and sustainable world. Ceres provides medically tailored organic meals to families experiencing health crises.  Ceres, a CCOF partner organization, is based in Marin and Sonoma counties in California and is focused on three primary policy and systems change goals:Prove the case for medically tailored meals and other food as medicine...
Written by Kelly Damewood on Monday, August 12, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF, CCOF Foundation, marketing


Dear CCOF Members and Supporters,It is with great pleasure and honor that I write to you as CCOF’s new CEO. Since assuming the role in January, I’ve been continually inspired by CCOF’s many accomplishments over 2018, which you helped make a reality. I’m no stranger to the strength of CCOF’s incredible membership of organic farmers, professionals, and supporters, and I’m excited to harness the power of this unique community to continue laying the path to an organic future.You helped us lay bricks in our organic path by enabling us to help 7,898 students and teachers get funding for organic...
Written by Josaphine Stevenson on Monday, August 12, 2019 on CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund - FFA, future organic farmers


Ryan Raether

Ryan Raether’s National FFA Organization Supervised Agricultural Experience project is expanding his organic pumpkin business. He usually sells out of pumpkins by the first week of October, as he only has a half-acre of land. With the money Raether will receive from the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, he will expand his space to one acre. He will use cow manure compost as topsoil and install a dripper system to water his pumpkins. In the past, Raether has watered all his pumpkins by hand, which has been very time consuming, so he is excited to expand his business thanks to the help from his...
Written by Josaphine Stevenson on Monday, August 5, 2019 on CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund - Vocational & Higher Ed, future organic farmers


Shannon Good

Shannon Good’s future career goals directly relate to organic agriculture, as she plans to become a business partner in her family’s organic dairy farm, Med-O-Bloom Farms, L.L.C., after she obtains her degree from Michigan State University. There are a few specific objectives Good would like to incorporate into her farm: improvements in genetics and breeding, educating the public about the benefits of organic dairy farming, and ultimately farm processing of her farm’s organic milk.  Good’s academic studies at Michigan State University will focus on animal science, which will give her the...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, July 29, 2019 on CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund


Frey Vineyards 2019_katrina-frey

“We are lucky to be alive, and to still be in business,” says Katrina Frey, executive director of Frey Vineyards. Almost two years ago, Frey Vineyards fell victim to the 2017 California wildfires, the costliest in the state’s history, with over $9 billion dollars combined in damages claimed and property destroyed.  The fires took down Frey Vineyard’s historic redwood offices, tasting room, bottling line, wine library cellar, barns, machine repair shop, and storage sheds. “Our friendly herd of goats perished,” along with “many chickens and some pets who couldn’t be found during the emergency...

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