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OFRF Receives NIFA Grant for Soil Health Education & Outreach

OFRF is pleased to join the esteemed group of grant recipients announced by USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) on October 11th. The grants are provided for research that helps farmers and ranchers grow and market high quality organic products, and are funded through the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) and Organic Transitions Program (ORG).

Compost Extracts Viable Alternative for Managing Weeds

Weeds are the bane of organic farmers—competing for water, space, light, and nutrients. Not surprisingly, in OFRF’s 2015 nationwide survey of organic farmers, research into effective weed management techniques emerged as a top priority.

Special Session Live Broadcast from Tri-Societies Meeting

OFRF is partnering with eOrganic on a live online broadcast of the Special Session on Organic Soil Health Research at the Tri-Societies (ASA, CSSA and SSSA) Annual Meeting on October 25, 2017.

In the session, OFRF's Research Program Director, Dr. Diana Jerkins, is bringing together researchers, extension, farmers and other organic agriculture stakeholders to provide current information on applicable research results. 

Organic Research Funding Bill Gains Momentum

The Organic Agriculture Research Act (H.R. 2436) is gaining crucial bipartisan support in the U.S. Congress, with an additional 37 cosponsors signing on in recent weeks. Representatives Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Dan Newhouse (R-WA), and Jimmy Panetta (D-CA) introduced the bill to support increased funding for organic research.  

Organic Sales Soared in 2016

Consumers used their wallets to show their increasing preference for organically grown food in 2016, and there’s every reason to believe this promising trend will continue. Results from the 2016 Certified Organic Survey conducted by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), show that sales were up 23 percent from $6.2B in 2015 to $7.6B in 2016.

At the same time, the number of certified organic farms in the country increased 11 percent to 14,217, and the number of certified acres increased 15 percent to 5.0M.

Call for Abstracts: 2018 Organic Farming Research Conference

OFRF, in partnership with Northeast Organic Farming Association of New Jersey and Rutgers University, invite the submission of research abstracts for presentation at the 2018 Organic Farming Research Conference, taking place on Friday January 26, 2018 at Rutgers University immediately preceding the NOFA-NJ Annual Winter Conference. The deadline for submissions is Friday, November

OFRF Now Accepting Research Proposals

OFRF is pleased to release our Request for Proposals (RFP) for 2018 research grants. Applicants residing in Canada, Mexico, and the United States are eligible to apply. In particular, OFRF encourages farmers, ranchers, graduate students, early career researchers, veterans, and Extension personnel to consider applying for funding. The deadline for proposals is December 15, 2017. OFRF will notify applicants about funding decisions in spring 2018.
 

Scholarships Available for Tri-Societies Meeting

OFRF is pleased to announce the opportunity to apply for a scholarship to attend the Organic Agriculture Soil Health Research special session at this year's meeting of the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of AmericaStudents, farmers, and researchers who would like to apply for a scholarship of up to $300 should submit a letter of interest to grants@ofrf.org by Friday, October 13, 2017.

OFRF to Address Soil Health at Tri-Societies Annual Meeting

There is a critical need to improve soil health in all agricultural systems. At this year’s meeting of the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, OFRF’s Research Program Director, Dr. Diana Jerkins will be holding a Special Session Symposium on Organic Agriculture Soil Health Research to discuss best practices for building healthy soils. OFRF also secured presenters for several soil health focused sessions throughout the conference.

New Technique Shown to Increase Marketable Yield of Organic Peaches

Organic peach production is extremely difficult in the humid conditions of the Southeast due to high pest and disease pressures, and the lack of effective, organically approved pesticides. Few growers have taken the risk and transitioned to organic peach farming. Currently, there is only one certified organic peach producer in South Carolina and none in Georgia (one grower is in the process of transition). In 2016, OFRF funded a project aimed at providing growers in the Southeast with a new tool to reduce the risk of transitioning to organic production of peaches.

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