The U.S. House and Senate Appropriations Committees are hard at work crafting their appropriations bills in response to the President’s budget to Congress. The following are some of the “Asks” that OTA is submitting to the committees for appropriations and report language on issues that affect the organic sector.
- Full authorized funding of $15 million for the National Organic Program.
- Report language urging USDA to act to the extent of its authority in implementing certification cost-share to producers and handlers.
- Fully fund the Organic Transition Research Program (ORG) at $5 million
- Fund the Data Initiative at $559,000 to allow USDA to continue organic data collection and dissemination.
- Report language urging USDA to trace organic usage of Environmental Quality Incentives Program dollars in its existing database.
- Report language urging increased prioritization of organic in Farm to School, Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program, and Regional Conservation Partnership Programs
As the appropriations process moves forward, it will be important to reach out to your Congressmen and Senators to encourage their support of these important priorities. Contact Marni Karlin to be involved in that outreach.