Blog posts by Shawna Rodgers

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Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, March 16, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, general organic, policy, roadmap


Photo cred Tommy Martino_Bob Quinn and Liz Carlisle

Tommy Martino, Bob Quinn and Liz Carlisle (left) on the Grain by Grain book tour 2019. As an organic farmer at home in Montana of over 30 years, I see firsthand the bounty created from tending to the land in an organic manner. Butterflies, bees, ladybugs, birds, and countless other creatures are drawn to the land tended organically. Those who work on the soil every day can feel its soft, supple nature underneath their boots. The palpable feeling of health and vitality pouring out of an organic farm is unmatched. That said, there is also science to stand behind the claim that organic is a more...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, March 2, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund


Malcolm St Cyr

Many people and organic businesses from around the country often ask those of us at CCOF, “So, does CCOF only work in California?” The short answer is, “No, we’re all across North America!”  CCOF Certification Services certifies more than 4,300 operations across the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The CCOF Foundation grants to students, teachers, and farms all across the country. So, when we say that we want to create a world where organic is the norm, we mean it. And, we can't do it without confident co-creative efforts from organizations all over the world, organizations like MOM’s...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, March 2, 2020 on CCOF Foundation, events


On Tuesday, March 3, the CCOF Foundation and the UNFI Foundation will co-host a cocktail hour at Natural Products Expo West to celebrate organic farmers and the next generation of skilled producers creating the organic future.   The event will cap off powerful lectures at Expo West’s Climate Day, including a keynote address from Patagonia’s CEO and President Rose Marcario. Patagonia, one of the CCOF Foundation’s many contributing supporters, continues to set the example for how businesses can build sustainability and social consciousness into their supply chains, community engagement...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, February 24, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF, events, general organic, policy, roadmap


CCOF Advocacy Day

The energy is still buzzing from CCOF’s recent visit to over 50 legislators in Sacramento on February 18 and 19 for Rooting for Organic: CCOF’s 2020 Annual Meeting and advocacy day. Joined by CCOF members, community allies, and organic advocates alike, more than 100 people met in the California State Capitol to engage in the democratic process and make the case that organic is the next step forward for a climate resilient California. From organic farmers and businesses to healthcare professionals, elementary school teachers, and climate advocates, CCOF gathered a diverse coalition in...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Tuesday, January 21, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic, roadmap


Before the Brave by Zack Pianko

Photo by Zack Piánko In the face of climate catastrophes taking place worldwide, CCOF is leading the charge to create a climate-resilient California and United States. On February 18 and 19, CCOF will be joined by California State Senator Anna Caballero at the CCOF Annual Meeting and Advocacy Day, where we will release the CCOF Roadmap to an Organic California: Policy Report. The release party for the report will be hosted by the CCOF Foundation, CCOF’s 501c(3) nonprofit arm that supports organic farmers and producers across the entire Untied States. Join us for organic food and cocktails, a...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, January 13, 2020 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic, roadmap


Anna Caballero

Photo provided by The CeresCourier.com We root for farmers growing organic. We root for producers, packers, and shippers of organic. We root for getting organic in schools. And, we root for the policymakers who move organic agriculture to the forefront as a solution to climate change. Senator Anna Caballero has been a partner and champion in this effort, fighting for farmers, farmworkers, and facing climate change head on. Senator Caballero provided valuable input on CCOF’s Roadmap to an Organic California, and now you can hear from her directly about the powerful potential of organic...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, December 2, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic


Ignacio Mendoza

Monday, December 2 is the final day to purchase tickets to attend the CCOF Foundation Feast at the Organic Grower Summit (OGS). If you’re attending OGS, you will not want to be without a seat to this beautiful event.  The California Strawberry Commission recently produced this video about CCOF-certified organic farmer José Mendoza and his family. José’s son Ignacio was the first in his family to attend college, and we are proud to support his education through the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund. Ignacio will be joining us as a speaker for the evening, building upon the legacy set forth by...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, November 18, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic


Ignacio Mendoza

Growing organic agriculture relies on supporting the next generation of organic farmers, and this is your opportunity to learn more about what a future organic farmer’s journey looks like. You’ll be able to meet Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund recipient Ignacio Mendoza when he speaks at the CCOF Foundation Feast at the Organic Grower Summit on December 4.  Not only is Mendoza the first of his family to attend college, he’s also the first of his family to graduate from high school. A CCOF-certified member, Mendoza grew up helping his father grow organic strawberries on the central coast of...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Tuesday, November 12, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic


Whiskey West

On Wednesday, December 4, the CCOF Foundation will host its third annual CCOF Foundation Feast benefit dinner at the Organic Grower Summit. All proceeds from this event directly benefit the 501(c)(3) nonprofit programs of the CCOF Foundation, and aside from the wonderful speakers, awarding of the Organic Champion Award, organic menu, and opportunity to hear from a Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund recipient, guests will also enjoy live music by Santa Cruz local band Whiskey West.  Whiskey West plays a mix of positive energy bluegrass and down-home country. Be sure to register yourself for the...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, November 4, 2019 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, events, general organic


The Farm Project

Remember to secure your seats (and your colleagues’!) for the CCOF Foundation Feast at the Organic Grower Summit on December 4. Join us to hear all about Zooey Deschanel and Jacob Pechenik’s The Farm Project when Pechenik delivers the keynote speech for the evening while guests enjoy a certified-organic, three-course meal at the Portola Hotel & Monterey Conference Center. All proceeds benefit the  programs of the CCOF Foundation that provide education and financial support for current and future organic professionals.  Accompanied by live music and inspiration from Pechenik’s speech, this...
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 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 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 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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