Targeted regulatory, legislative, and marketing news and information for the organic business community.


NOP compliant microorganisms scheduled to expire in 2016
Posted 211 days ago
NOP compliant microorganisms scheduled to exp…
Mark your calendar for Aug. 19 residue sampling webinar
Posted 211 days ago
Mark your calendar for Aug. 19 residue sampli…
July edition of The Organic Scoop now available
Posted 211 days ago
July edition of The Organic Scoop now availab…
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Tell USDA you support the check-off exemption plan

OTA is encouraging its members to support and comment on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s proposed rule exempting organic operations from paying into conventional commodity research and promotion orders and marketing orders. The comment period deadline has been extended to Feb. 17, giving you more time to read OTA’s draft comments and share your [...]

NOP revised enforcement policy

Yesterday, the National Organic Program (NOP) released a revised Instruction concerning enforcement policies, including an updated Penalty Matrix. This Instruction was originally published in 2013. Based on certifier feedback, it has been revised to clarify NOP expectations with respect to certifier enforcement actions. If you have any questions or concerns, contact Gwendolyn Wyard, OTA’s Regulatory [...]

USDA’s 2015 Organic Producer Survey underway

Organic farmers have until February 13 to complete their mail-in response and until April 3 to complete online the Organic Producer Survey recently sent by USDA’s National Agriculture Statistics Service (NASS) to all known organic producers nationwide. Data collected from the organic survey will help establish crop insurance programs for organic producers, justify the need [...]

House Agriculture Committee names new members

The House Agriculture Committee named its new members for the 114th Congress, and also made leadership and subcommittee assignments. The House Agriculture Committee will be chaired by Mike Conaway (R-TX), with Collin Peterson (D-MN) continuing as Ranking Member. Other Republican committee members are Randy Neugebauer (TX), Bob Goodlatte (VA), Frank Lucas (OK), Steve King (IA), [...]

Senate Agriculture Committee names new members

Meanwhile, the Senate Agriculture Committee named its new members for the 114th Congress, and made leadership and subcommittee assignments The Senate Agriculture Committee will be chaired by Pat Roberts (R-KS), and the Ranking Member will be Debbie Stabenow (D-MI). Other Republican members of the Committee are Thad Cochran (MS), Mitch McConnell (KY), John Boozman (AR), [...]

Engage with ag committee members through OTA

OTA member companies that have facilities in any of the districts or states represented by Senate or House Ag Committee members are encouraged to reach out to Marni Karlin, OTA’s Vice President for Government Affairs/General Counsel. OTA is planning a strategy to engage Committee members (both new and returning) and make sure they know the [...]

Telling the organic story

Media from all over the country increasingly reach out to OTA when doing stories on the organic industry. In just the past week, OTA has been quoted in newspapers in Californiaand Maine, agricultural publications in the Corn Belt, and a major public broadcasting network in the Midwest.  These included a story on the expanded check-off [...]

Free webinar on retail trends in France and Japan

On January 29 at 3 p.m. Eastern, join Monique Marez, OTA’s Senior International Trade Manager, for a free webinar focusing on retail trends in two hot markets—Franceand Japan—for USDA certified organic products. Learn about trending products, new POS designs, and cutting-edge shopping experiences taking international markets by storm. Sign up here.

Organic Center research highlighted at EcoFarm

The Organic Center participated in the Ecological Farming Association’s EcoFarm Conference January 22-24, which brought together food system stakeholders for workshops on the latest advances in agricultural techniques, marketing strategies, and food policy. The Center’s research on organic techniques for managing fire blight without antibiotics was presented by David Granatstein, Sustainable Agriculture Specialist at the [...]

Register now for organic farming research symposium

The Organic Agriculture Research Symposium (OARS) will be hosted by the University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems and Department of Agronomy Feb. 25-26 in La Crosse, WI, just prior to the MOSES Organic Farming Conference. More than 40 presenters from across the United Statesand abroad will share the latest developments in organic farming [...]