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Cooperative Extension in Salinas Responds to Reports of “Red” Aphids in Organic Romaine

A recent blog post by Alejandro Del Pozo-Valdivia, UC Cooperative Extension entomologist based in Salinas, addresses reports he’s received about “red aphids” being found in organic romaine lettuce varieties that are resistant to the lettuce aphid.
 
Laboratory analysis showed that the “red aphids” were not lettuce aphids, but were actually either potato aphids or foxglove aphids. 
 

COPAC and COPAC Processor Subcommittee Meet September 26 in Santa Rosa

The California Organic Products Advisory Committee (COPAC) advises the California secretary of food and agriculture on education, outreach, and technical assistance for organic producers in the state. 
 
COPAC will convene a meeting on September 26 from 10:00 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Sonoma County Farm Bureau office.

COPAC Elects New Leadership & Increases Enforcement at Restaurants Making Organic Claims

The members of the California Organic Products Advisory Committee (COPAC) elected new leadership at their meeting during the annual EcoFarm Conference in Asilomar, California. The committee elected Karen Archipley of Archi’s Acres as chair of the committee and Jeremy Johnson of Traditional Medicinals as vice chair.
 
COPAC is a 15-member committee that advises the California Secretary of Food and Agriculture on organic agriculture and issues related to organic production.

Cost Share Organic Certification Fee Refund Application Period Still Open

cost share
The National Organic Certification Cost Share Program is still open for 2019 applications, but only a few months remain to apply for funds. Through this program, eligible operations will be reimbursed up to 75% of their organic certification costs, not to exceed $750 for each NOP scope of organic certification. Eligible operations can also receive a refund of California State Organic Program registration fees. Any operation that is located within the United States and received organic certification between October 1, 2018 and September 30, 2019 may apply for reimbursement.

Cost Share Organic Certification Fee Refund Application Period Still Open

The National Organic Certification Cost Share Program is still open for 2017 applications, but only a few months remain to apply for funds. Through this program, eligible operations will be reimbursed up to 75% of their organic certification costs, not to exceed $750, for each NOP scope of organic certification. Eligible operations can also receive a refund of California State Organic Program registration fees. Any operation that is located within the United States and received organic certification between October 1, 2016 and September 30, 2017 may apply for reimbursement.

COVID-19 Webinar: Financial Relief for Farmers

The Organic Trade Association (OTA) recognizes the unique needs of the farmer, rancher, and producer community as it navigates the current pandemic. 
 
OTA’s next COVID-19 webinar on Wednesday, April 15 at 11:00 a.m. PDT will allow you to learn about new and existing programs designed specifically to meet your needs.

Creating an Organic California with Your Help

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.

Crop Insurance Options for Organic Farmers and Ranchers

New U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) crop insurance programs have expanded risk management options for organic farmers and ranchers. Are you curious to know what programs might be a good fit for your operation? 
 

Curious About Hemp? Learn More at the Organic Grower Summit

Since the 2018 Farm Bill made industrial hemp legal, there has been a lot of excitement about the growing hemp marketplace. Hemp is an incredibly sustainable crop that builds soil, requires little to no pesticides, and only requires about a third of the water that is used to grow corn. The right varieties of hemp can even offer producers two harvests from one crop—the seed can be processed for oil, and the fiber can be used for textiles and manufacturing.

Deadline Extended to Complete Your 2019 Organic Survey

USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) continues to collect responses to the 2019 Organic Survey, a once-every-five-year special study to the 2017 Census of Agriculture. 
 
Response windows are open through March. NASS encourages the producers who received these questionnaires to respond online, by mail, or by telephone.
 
“We are extending the deadlines for response since we still have a steady stream of completed questionnaires coming in,” said NASS Administrator Hubert Hamer.

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