Brise Tencer: Research, Education and Policy is essential for Organic Agriculture

Brise Tencer is the Executive Director at the Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF). She has over 19 years of leadership experience working on organic food policy, farming, and research issues.

I recently caught up with Brise to learn more about the state of organic research, the impact OFRF has made through education and why policy is so important, now more than ever. Continue reading

Why go to Oregon? Because Seed Matters

My friends ask me what exotic place I plan to visit on my next culinary adventure. My wanderlust urged me to attend BioFach in Nuremberg, Germany and relish the schnitzel and bratwurst. Instead, I am off to beautiful downtown Corvallis, Oregon to sample the organic hazelnuts and Pinot Noir while attending the 9th Organic Seed Growers Conference.

Why you may ask this domestic departure? Because all things I savor come from seeds. This year’s theme is Synergy that Sustains, and it’s going to take quite a lot of synergy to sustain and advance organic seed systems worldwide. Continue reading

Tales from an Unlikely Organic Blogger

Gary Hirschberg called me some weeks ago to ask if I would speak to a group of family and food bloggers. Stonyfield intended to immerse them in the taste and touring of organic farms and chefs in Northern California. Would I gather up my knowledge of organic policy, politics and passion and utter a few words on that murky blogosphere?

The invitation leads me to ponder the unlikely journey I have traversed to get to this very page.

How did I come to write about organic and why organic matters?      Continue reading

Can California’s Farmers and Fish Navigate the Current Water Dilemma?

We ended 2017 in California with one of the driest Decembers on record. San Jose had its second driest December since records began in 1893. San Francisco had its fourth driest dating back to 1849, according to the National Weather Service in Monterey.

Despite recent rains in the news, the entire state of California is still well below average in precipitation for the season to date.  California has seen less precipitation  due to a ridiculously resilient high-pressure ridge that knocks all the storms away from California’s thirsty landscape. Continue reading

Holiday Giving Begins at Home with Food and Farming

If your inbox is anything like mine, you are getting crushed with year-end donation requests. As the days have shortened and the nights are long, it gives time to ponder what’s important and how to make a meaningful change in the world.

Did you know that obesity is more dangerous than traffic accidents, public drinking water is contaminated with nitrates and our morning cereal may harbor traces of herbicides?

So food and farming affect us at the very heart of our homes.

As you sift your way through year-end requests, consider that food and agriculture are the very residence of our collective well-being. The best place to affect change begins right here at home. Continue reading