CCOF Blog

Written by Josaphine Stevenson on Monday, October 15, 2018 on CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund - Vocational & Higher Ed, future organic farmers


Nelson Hawkins

After recently graduating from the University of California, Davis with a degree in sustainable agriculture combined with a decade of direct farming experience, Nelson Hawkins now feels empowered to turn his long-term goal of starting an organic farm into reality. This year, he is starting on a ¼-acre urban farm in West Sacramento, California growing seasonal vegetables for the surrounding neighborhood as well as supplying to local markets. Hawkins plans on growing his farm in size every year so that he can feed more people clean nutritious vegetables and inspire the next generation of...
Written by Peter Nell on Monday, October 8, 2018 on financial assistance, general organic, NOSB, policy

CCOF is committed to helping producers attend National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) meetings by providing scholarships to cover the costs of travel and lodging.  Scholarships are currently available for the upcoming NOSB meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota on October 24-26, 2018.  To apply for the scholarship, please complete and submit the application to pnell@ccof.org by Friday, October 12, 2018. At their fall meeting, NOSB will vote to relist the 2020 Sunset Review materials to the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (National List). NOSB reviews all substances on the National...
Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, October 8, 2018 on advocacy, CCOF Foundation, education, events, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund - Vocational & Higher Ed, general organic


Rhyne Cureton

Rhyne Cureton, a 2018 CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund recipient, has joined the agenda of speakers for the 2018 “We Are Organic” Dinner at the Organic Grower Summit on December 12 in Monterey, California. Cureton was born in rural Monroe, North Carolina but has lived most of his life in the metropolitan city of Charlotte. His family is two generations removed from agriculture. At an early age, Cureton realized a great disconnect between modern agricultural practices and nature. Later at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (a land-grant university),...
Written by Peter Nell on Monday, October 8, 2018 on education, events, general organic, policy, water

The California State Water Resources Control Board will accept public comments on the proposed updates to the state cannabis water regulations. The State Water Board is proposing updates to the “Cannabis Cultivation Policy – Principles and Guidelines for Cannabis Cultivation,” “Cannabis Cultivation Policy Staff Report,” and the “General Waste Discharge Requirements and Wavier of Waste Discharge Requirements for Discharges of Waste Associated with Cannabis Cultivation Activities (Cannabis Cultivation General Order).” Written comments will be accepted until 12:00 p.m. (noon) on Tuesday,...
Written by Peter Nell on Monday, October 8, 2018 on advocacy, pests and pesticides, policy

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) will hold a public hearing and commenting period regarding the designation of chlorpyrifos as a toxic air contaminant. Chlorpyrifos is a prohibited pesticide in organic production.  DPR will accept written comments on chlorpyrifos until 5:00 p.m. on November 9, 2018. Comments can be submitted electronically to dpr18002@cdpr.ca.gov or via fax to (916) 324-1491.  DPR will hold a public hearing on Thursday, November 8, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. at: California Environmental Protection Agency Headquarters BuildingSierra Hearing Room1001 I...
Written by Peter Nell on Monday, October 8, 2018 on general organic, NOP, policy

In early October, California Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 1409 into law. SB 1409 removes barriers to hemp cultivation in California by authorizing the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to establish an industrial hemp pilot program, update and match the definition of hemp, increase access to hemp seed, and more.  CCOF joined hemp advocacy groups in support of SB 1409 because it would expand hemp production in California and open the possibility for organic certification of California hemp. The authorized hemp pilot program would align with the National Organic Program (NOP...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, October 8, 2018 on CCOF Foundation, education, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, future organic farmers

The CCOF Foundation offers grants to students and teachers of organic agriculture across the country. Since 2014, the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund has granted over half a million dollars, impacting more than 30,000 students and teachers of organic agriculture. This year, one of the Fund’s newest supporters is Blue Marble Brands, joining CCOF’s mission all the way from Providence, Rhode Island.   Last fall, Blue Marble supported CCOF through its Plant the Seed: Eat. Learn. Grow Organic retail promotion, created to help educate consumers about the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund and its...
Written by Josaphine Stevenson on Monday, October 8, 2018 on CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund - Vocational & Higher Ed, future organic farmers


Joshua Wiemer

Joshua Wiemer’s goal is to continue working on his family’s organic dairy farm after graduating college and purchase it from his parents when they retire. Wiemer’s experience growing up on a farm, working with his parents and siblings, taking care of the animals, planting and harvesting crops, and being involved with the environment made him realize he wants to work in agriculture as a career. His decision to become a farmer was reinforced when Wiemer took over daily operations for while his father recovered from double knee replacement surgery. This experience opened his eyes to the...
Written by Shawna Rodgers on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 on CCOF, CCOF Foundation, events


Sophia Soctt 3

In partnership with the Organic Produce Network, the CCOF Foundation is hosting its annual "We Are Organic” Dinner at the Organic Grower Summit, December 12, 2018 at the Monterey Conference Center.  In addition to comments and speeches from organic industry leaders and Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund recipient Rhyne Cureton, this year’s dinner marks the first at which live music will accompany the 100% organic menu.   Sophia Scott, budding country music artist, has confirmed she will join the CCOF Foundation as its honored musical guest for the “We Are Organic” Dinner.   Musical guest Scott’...
Written by Peter Nell on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 on financial assistance, NOSB, policy

CCOF is committed to helping producers attend National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) meetings by providing scholarships to cover the costs of travel and lodging.  Scholarships are currently available for the upcoming NOSB meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota on October 24-26, 2018.  To apply for the scholarship, please complete and submit the application to pnell@ccof.org by Friday, October 12, 2018. At their fall meeting, NOSB will vote to relist the 2020 Sunset Review materials to the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances. NOSB reviews all substances on the National List every five...
Written by Josaphine Stevenson on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 on CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund - FFA

Since 2014, the CCOF Foundation and its partners have awarded $1,000 grants through the National FFA to middle and high school students (grades 7 through 12) to conduct an organic Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE). The CCOF Foundation, in partnership with National FFA, awarded $100,000 dollars in the past 4 years to support FFA students throughout the nation! Applications are available through the National FFA Organization and are due November 15, 2018.  Previous recipient Hunter Blanton used his grant to install vermicomposting towers into her grandfather’s organic greenhouse and...
Written by Guest Blogger on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 on advocacy, general organic, policy

Assembly Bill 2377, authored by Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks), was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown earlier today. This bill funds technical assistance for farmers and ranchers seeking to transition to Climate Smart Agriculture. “As California continues to lead the way in climate change, it’s imperative that we assist all industries so that they adopt practices that will help achieve our climate goals,” said Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin. “I’m grateful that the governor saw the need to improve these programs as a vital piece of hitting our climate objectives.” California...
Written by Peter Nell on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 on NOSB

The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) will host their second yearly meeting in St. Paul on October 24-26, 2018. Organic stakeholders can register now to speak at a pre-meeting webinar and at the meeting in St. Paul.  The NOSB will host two webinars on October 16, 2018 and October 18, 2018 from 1:00–4:00 p.m. Eastern. Those interested in the webinar must register before October 4, 2018. Commenters are allotted a 3-minute comment slot and can only register for one commenting slot on either day.  The NOSB will also accept in-person comments in St. Paul. In-person commenters must register...
Written by Meaghan Donovan on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 on food safety, water

Are you looking for more information on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) agricultural production water requirements for produce farms? Have you heard that you may need to test your irrigation water to comply with FSMA, but aren’t sure what is the best way to go about doing it?  Join the CCOF Foundation and the Western Center for Food Safety on October 10 for a webinar that highlights practical guidelines on how to get ready for the agricultural production water requirements of the FSMA Produce Safety Rule. Learn microbiology basics to help you better understand the water requirements...
Written by Josaphine Stevenson on Monday, October 1, 2018 on CCOF Foundation, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund, Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund - Vocational & Higher Ed, future organic farmers


Julia Reese

Julia Reese was born and raised in the Central Valley of California. Growing up, she spent a significant amount of time working with her dad in organic fruit and nut orchards. She gained an appreciation for the industry and decided she wanted to be involved in it in the future.  Reese currently attends the University of Idaho, where she studies agricultural systems management and civil engineering. She is on the dean’s list, is a member the Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society, serves as vice president of the cycling club, and works for Crop Matters, an agricultural contract research company...

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