We Can't Afford to Turn Our Back on Organic Farmers

Maureen Wilmot's picture

We are on needles and pins at the OFRF offices waiting to hear word from DC about the fate of the 2012 Farm Bill. The farm bill is the major body of legislation driving our food and agricultural policy in this country. We can ill afford for our food production policies to be tossed around as a political football. This impacts millions of American farmers and everyone who eats.

What concerns us most is how this specifically affects organic farmers. If a farm bill is not passed before the end of the Federal fiscal year (September 30), all the hard earned gains for organic farmers will be lost.  Provisions for organic farmers and organic programs fall far short of a baseline minimum needed to guarantee continued funding.  Anything under $50 million is vulnerable to cuts.  Since we don't invest nearly enough in organic farming, it is certainly more vulnerable than other programs.  
 
When I hear from organic farmers about their challenges, one issue comes up repeatedly; they don't have support in Washington, DC.  And, I can understand why they feel that way.  Non-organic farmers know, that even in tough economic times, their programs will be sustained. Not so for organic farmers. With below the baseline level funding in each farm bill, organic farmers do not have the same assurance that support for their work will be forthcoming. This uncertainty makes organic farming an even riskier endeavor.
 
If you ever need to revisit the many ways organic farmers enhance our world, check this out.  
 
It would be a shame for America legislature to turn its back on one of the brightest spots in our economy-- and, our families.   
 

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