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Organic Research Funding Lagging

REPORT: CONTINUED GROWTH OF ORGANIC FARMING REQUIRES EXPANDED INVESTMENTS IN RESEARCH. The VAST majority of research efforts completely ignores the organic farming sector. This is not only unfair but restrains the growth of organic farming which demonstratively is good for consumers, good for the environment as well as being good for farmers.
This new report shines a spotlight on where improvements are needed. Jim

“The systematic ignoring of the need for publicly funded research in our country‚Äôs fastest growing agricultural sector prompted the Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF), an NSAC member organization, to take a closer look at the role public investments have played in the organic industry to date. OFRF recently released their findings in the report, Taking Stock: Analyzing and Reporting Organic Research Investments, which offers an unprecedented assessment of the impact investments from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have made in addressing critical research needs of organic farmers. The report also provides recommendations for key areas in which future research investments should be targeted…

“…Because federal investments have failed to keep public research and seed breeding institutions viable, farmers now lack access to seed stocks uniquely tailored to their climate and growing needs. This is particularly problematic for organic farmers, who, according to a recent report from the Organic Seed Alliance, use 75 percent organic seed on average for operations under 10 acres, but only 20 percent organic seed on average for operations over 480 acres…

“Ensuring that farmers have access to plant varieties specifically adapted to organic production systems remains a top research concern in the organic community. This was clearly reflected in the report, which found that this priority was addressed by dozens of funded research projects, resulting in impressive findings and new and improved seed and plant varieties.”