One Final Push For Organic – April 19th is Your Deadline to Act

My humble beginnings in the organic industry began in 1976 in a small co-op in Iowa. The people were eclectic, and I was drawn to the culture as much as I was the idea of providing healthy organic foods to my community. We were a nascent movement, getting back to the land and nature. Growing, selling and eating organic foods—we were a palpable crusade of Birkenstock bedecked folks who wanted to leave the world a better place through food and agriculture.

I was involved in a bit of midwifery helping to birth the organic movement. Fast forward almost 40 years later, has the organic industry truly grown up? Continue reading

Peeling Back the Labels: Non-GMO & Organic

NON GMO ProjectThe rise of Non-GMO foods has stormed the aisles of almost every supermarket, natural food store and big box outlet, running rip shod over almost every other label claim. I can even find the Non-GMO claim inside my local gas-mart amongst the nuts and chips. Forecasts indicate that the global Non-GMO foods market will grow at a CAGR of 16.23% during the 2017-2021 period.

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If Eating Organic Was a Color – It Would Be Shades of Grey

shutterstock_262694438For a colorful world of grocery – from bright red raspberries to deep blue corn chips –  it is remarkable how the organic food industry has various shades of grey. While this blog post is no “50 Shades of Grey” novel, it is a hot topic with no perfect answers!

Some of the big “grey dilemmas” I personally struggle with include: Continue reading

Organic is Skin Deep

As follow-shutterstock_444588811up from my last blog post, Beyond the Dirty Dozen…Tips to Shop Organic Throughout the Store, we are continuing the story to talk about a department that you may not always consider buying organic.

“Did you know that your skin in your largest organ?!” is a fun fact that a preteen may share after coming home from their biology class. Indeed, it’s a fact that you may vaguely recall learning at some point – but we want to understand what this means for the products you use, especially in regard to organic. Continue reading

Cooking up an Organic Future – Is a Check-Off the Right Recipe?

GROOrganic.large-logoOrganic food and fiber in the US are growing despite themselves. Even last week Miles McEvoy, Deputy Administrator of the National Organic Program, touted the double-digit growth of certified operations in the US are now 21,000 with 31,000 around the world. While this $40+ billion industry is indeed exploding on the shelves in US supermarkets, only 1% of agriculture, in the US is dedicated to growing organic. This ravenous appetite for organic food and fiber is percolating into a frothy peak, yet we just aren’t producing what we need to feed the growing hunger. The fact that Costco is buying land and equipment, partnering with organic growers to meet demand is commendable — but it’s not going to quench the bigger dilemma.

A spark is needed in agriculture and the Organic Check-off may be the ingredient that serves up the juiciest future.  Continue reading