With New Funding, CCOF Will Educate Consumers and Support Organic Producers
(January 22, 2024) Santa Cruz, CA – CCOF is honored to receive $3 million from the USDA, which has awarded $9.75 million to 10 projects through its Organic Market Development Grant (OMDG) program. This is the first round of funding awarded through the Organic Market Development Grant program, which aims to open and expand new revenue streams for the organic industry and create more opportunities for American farmers.
“We applied for funding so we could offer more support to organic producers in reaching buyers and educating consumers,” says CCOF CEO Kelly Damewood. “This grant enables CCOF to increase public confidence in the organic label while uplifting market opportunities for underserved organic producers.”
This year, CCOF will embark on a large-scale 3-year campaign to improve and expand market access for small and underserved organic farmers. With resources from the USDA grant, CCOF will implement a marketing campaign that addresses two key obstacles restricting growth in organic sales: the lack of consumers’ clarity on what organic means, and their lack of confidence in the seal. CCOF will create market paths for small and underserved organic producers by linking them with buyers actively looking to source their products, as well as educate farmers on how to talk to consumers and buyers about organic and provide them with the tools to do so. CCOF will be the first-ever organization to promote organic through national TV and digital advertising.
The expected outcomes of this project are that consumers and buyers will gain knowledge about organic products and that small and underserved producers will increase organic production to meet the resulting increased demand through direct-market channels and buyer business transactions.
CCOF extends well-deserved congratulations to the other recipients of this grant. The awarded projects support U.S. food and agricultural product market opportunities, while increasing consumer access to fresh, healthy foods. These projects will support organic producers and further USDA’s goals to develop more and better markets, grow a diverse and equitable food system, and increase climate-smart agricultural practices. CCOF and the other grantees are taking a strong step towards a future where organic is the norm.
CCOF advances organic agriculture for a healthy world. We advocate on behalf of our members for organic policies, support the growth of organic through education and grants, and provide organic certification that is personal and accessible.
CCOF is a nonprofit organization governed by the people who grow and make our food. Founded in California more than 50 years ago, today our roots span the breadth of North America and our presence is internationally recognized. We are supported by an organic family of farmers, ranchers, processors, retailers, consumers, and policymakers. Together, we work to realize a future where organic is the norm.
For more information about CCOF, visit www.ccof.org.