This post contains content sponsored by the Organic Trade Association. The opinions expressed in this post are my own and do not necessarily represent those of the Organic Trade Association. For more information on the Gro-Organic Check-Off Program, please visit the consumer action page at GROorganic or Mamavation’s article.
We real foodies always say “real food doesn’t have bar codes,” and I often add to that, “or a marketing budget.”
That is – amazingly – about to change.
If we’re willing to support it.
Organic Supply and Demand
I see things moving in the right direction in our culture (as far as food goes), don’t you?
More parents worry about what their kids are eating.
Grassfed beef is becoming less “boutique” and more mainstream – no longer just for the rich. People are understanding the value of caring about what our food eats.
Healthy eating in general is becoming more “whole food” and less “follow whatever current marketing says for the next packaged weight loss product.”
And organics are definitely starting to get a foothold.
But if all this – the way I try eat at home most of the time and the way we really think is healthier for our kids – if it really becomes part of the culture and suddenly “everyone is doing it…” Will there be enough?
Organic needs support.
And the government might be in a position to help.
…we could support new transitioning organic farmers with 25 organic specialists in the U.S. dedicated to farmers instead of the current number: one.
…future ag leaders were educated about organics in a comprehensive, intentional way? What if scholarships could be given for college students to learn about organic farming?
…TV and media advertising actually promoted ORGANIC FOOD? Wouldn’t that make you proud? Just like the old “Got Milk?” commercials, we could actually see something like, “Got Organics?” on TV!
…funding was available for research on the impact of organic foods (and spreading the findings via media)? We always say, “There’s no money in healing through plain old food, just pharmaceuticals.” That may have hope for reversal!!!
These are just some of the things the Organic Check-Off Program could do.
What is the purpose of the Organic Check-off?
An Organic Check-off program would generate money for the organic sector to:
- Educate consumers about what organic is and its benefits
- Distinguish organic from lesser claims and unregulated seals like “natural”
- Confirm the science behind the environmental and public health benefits of organic
- Undertake research to solve problems such as invasive pests and weed control
- Bring new farmers into organic production through information and technical assistance
- Reduce the supply crunch by transitioning farmland to organic production across the U.S.
The Organic Check-off would raise over $30 million per year for promotional, educational and research activities. Over time, this would be a game-changer for the organic sector.
Farmers are behind the movement, and it would help both small and large producers. Each organic stakeholder will only contribute one-tenth of 1% of their organic sales, so costs for consumers should not see an increase because of this. Farmers will hold at least half the seats of the check-off board making decisions.
This is a great thing! Please let your voice be heard by commenting here or right below! If you have concerns or questions, I have more information that I didn’t include in the post and will be happy to answer your comments.