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Written by Shawna Rodgers on Tuesday, December 6, 2022

In 2020, the CCOF Foundation partnered with Anheuser-Busch to allocate half a million dollars to farmers across the United States that were in the process of transitioning to organic through our Contract for Change partnership. Jared Siverling of Siverling Centennial Farms was one such grantee. This is his story about transitioning from conventional to certified organic production. 

Written by Guest Blogger on Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Beginning January 1, 2023, all growers with ranches located in Groundwater Phase 1 Areas must start maintaining records for all nitrogen applied to crops, total nitrogen removed during harvest, and irrigation management information. This information will be used to submit the Irrigation and Nutrient Management Plan (INMP) summary report, which is due March 1, 2024.

Beginning January 1, 2023, all growers with ranches located in Groundwater Phase 2 and 3 Areas must start maintaining records for all nitrogen applied to crops. This information will be used to submit the Total Nitrogen…

Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, November 21, 2022

Underscoring more than a half century of pioneering work in organic farming, University of California President Michael V. Drake announced today that UC Santa Cruz will be designated as an Agricultural Experiment Station (AES). 

UC Santa Cruz and UC Merced are the first campuses to receive this designation in 50 years and join UC Davis, UC Berkeley, and UC Riverside as AES campuses. 

“Both UC Santa Cruz and UC Merced have long conducted research on agricultural issues, so it is appropriate that these campuses also receive this designation and have their work recognized as…

Written by Guest Blogger on Monday, November 21, 2022

Growers of organic vegetables and strawberries across California are invited to attend an online training to learn how to manage nitrogen fertilization. The University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) is offering the three-part Nitrogen Planning and Management in Organic Production of Annual Crops Workshop on November 29, December 5, and December 12.

Growers, certified crop advisers, pest control advisers, and other agricultural professionals who are interested in learning about nitrogen management in organically farmed crops are encouraged to enroll.

The workshop…

Written by Laetitia Benador on Monday, November 21, 2022

America’s appetite for organic dairy, meat, and eggs has soared in the last decade—growing on average 9 percent annually. 

However, lack of investment in organic supply chains has led to chronically insufficient domestic production of organic livestock feed, leaving U.S. organic farmers dependent on insecure imported supplies. Meanwhile, persistent drought in the West has restricted supplies of organic hay, leading to dangerously low availability and skyrocketing prices.

When trade disruptions, global supply chain shocks, inflation, and worsening drought were added to these…

Written by Shawna Rodgers on Monday, November 21, 2022
Becky Blythe pictured leftBecky Blythe pictured left

The CCOF Foundation honors longtime organic advocate Becky Blythe as our 2022 Organic Champion. 

For 16 years, CCOF certification staff Becky Blythe brought integrity to the organic standard. A longtime Santa Cruz local, Becky was active in the environmental activism community on the Central Coast. Becky passed away this summer. She is…

Written by Jane Sooby on Tuesday, November 15, 2022



The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), federal advisory body to the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture on organic issues, convened October 25–27, 2022, in Sacramento, California. The NOSB meeting was preceded by a day-long meeting convened by the National Organic Coalition (NOC) on October 24.

The NOC meeting featured a series of sessions that dove deep into organic issues,…

Written by Larissa Hernandez on Monday, November 7, 2022

The Bricmont Hardship Assistance Fund gives direct financial assistance to organic producers who have experienced disaster. In 2022, we have partnered with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to administer additional drought relief grants specifically for dairy producers in California.

If you—or an organic dairy producer you know—have experienced hardship…

Written by Jane Sooby on Monday, October 24, 2022

Two organic cost-share programs are open for applications now through October 31. Certified organic operations may apply for and receive reimbursement from both programs. Transitional operations may apply for reimbursement of transition-related expenses.

“Original” cost share, the Organic Certification Cost Share Program, offers certified organic operations reimbursement of 50 percent of eligible organic certification–related expenses, including State Organic Program registration fees up to a maximum of $500 per scope. Find more information on the “original” cost share program on…

Written by kta on Monday, October 17, 2022

CCOF’s food safety manager, Jacob Guth, will be attending the Global Produce & Floral Show in Orlando, Florida, on October 27 through 29. If you plan to attend, we would love to meet you there!

If you have questions about how bundling certifications with CCOF can save you time and money, which of our PrimusGFS and GLOBALG.A.P. certifications is best for you, or recent events in the food safety community like the USDA's Food Safety Cost Share program, we would be happy to set a time to chat.

Let us know if you plan to attend the show by emailing foodsafety@ccof.org. We…

Written by Jessica González on Tuesday, October 11, 2022


On September 20, CCOF partnered with the Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA) and the Berkeley Food Institute (BFI) to host California State Senator Laird and Assemblymember Rivas for a tour of ALBA’s organic farm in the Salinas Valley and a discussion of the needs of organic farmers. 

CCOF and the legislators were joined by…

Written by Laetitia Benador on Tuesday, October 11, 2022
Sheep


California producers of cattle, goats, sheep, and swine can now register with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to conduct on-farm slaughter using a mobile slaughter operator (MSO).

This program stems from the passage of CCOF-supported AB 888 in 2021, which expanded California’s on-farm slaughter allowances beyond…

Written by Jane Sooby on Monday, October 3, 2022

After making it through the California Assembly and Senate, AB 1870, the bill that would make needed reforms to the state program regulating organic food manufacturers, processors, and handlers, was vetoed by Governor Newsom.

CCOF pursued the legislation in response to issues raised by members about the administration of the State Organic Program by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), which uses an outdated, paper-based registration system and continues to carry a backlog of unresolved complaints.

AB 1870, authored by Assemblymember Mark Stone and co-authored…

Written by Rebekah Weber on Monday, October 3, 2022

Earlier this month, former top California Department of Food and Agriculture scientist Dr. Amrith Gunasekara published a blistering criticism of Sri Lanka’s policy to ban synthetic fertilizers, which caused farmers to start farming organically virtually overnight. The devastating results are outlined by Dr. Gunasekara in an article published in AgAlert on September 20, 2022.

Unfortunately, the article then points to the resulting agricultural challenges in Sri Lanka as a cautionary tale for California. The comparison is misleading for a few key reasons.

 Sri Lanka is not…
Written by Brian Coltrin on Monday, October 3, 2022

 

The CCOF Foundation is teaming up with American Farmland Trust, Cachuma Resource Conservation District (CRCD), and Daily Harvest to present a Spanish-language farm training in Santa Maria, California, on October 12, 2022, from 12–3 p.m. If you are a Spanish-speaking grower interested in learning more about organic certification, irrigation, and quick nitrate tests, join us! The CCOF…