Organic Trade Association (OTA) is encouraging the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA) to look at opening their doors to more choice and opportunity in the agriculture system– including the organic option.
“This is a great time for farms of all sizes to look at how organic might fit into their operation,” Executive Director and CEO Laura Batcha said. “The State Departments of Agriculture play a key role in developing and delivering sound public policy that supports diversity in agriculture, including the organic choice for farmers and ranchers of all sizes and backgrounds.”
Batcha noted that organic farm-gate prices are in some cases two to three times higher than that for their conventional counterparts, and that combined with forecasted long-term growth for organic demand and the opportunity for stable contract and supply chain relationships, the organic option has never looked better.
“The greatest challenge facing the $39.1 billion organic industry is how to meet the burgeoning demand for organic food with adequate supply of crops, ingredients, and feed. Imports of organic products outpaced exports, amounting to nearly $1.3 billion in 2014. This amounts to a ‘Help Wanted’ message for American farmers. Please support them when they answer this call,” Batcha told the agricultural officials.
The request was made at an OTA-hosted organic lunch for officials who have been meeting in Hawaii to discuss key national agricultural policy issues. They outlined several ideas for collaboration.