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David Sparks Ph.d Organic Rules
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Line on Agriculture
Date: August 14, 2019

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Even though there appears to be great interest on the part of consumers to purchase organic food, some argue that the standards required to meet the organic label are too tough and that they may actually be slowing down the entry of new farms into organic production, particularly that rule that mandates three years conversion time to go from conventional farming to certified organic farming. Three years in which you as a farmer would produce organically but have to deal with possible impacts of that, which might include decreased yields.

But Dr. Jennifer Tucker with the National Organic Program told a Washington panel: In this case, at least so far, there has not been interest in lessening those transition standards.

There is interest in enforcing all of the organic standards. So all farmers here and those in other countries who want to sell their products here all play by the same rules. The Agriculture Department has trained certifiers that go around checking on organic growers, making sure they're not labeling their conventionally produced products as organic so they can sell them for the premium organic price, essentially cheating consumers and their fellow farmers who are following the rules. Of course, organic rules and standards dictate that products have to be produced with no chemical pesticides, weed killers, growth hormones, etc. and no use of genetically modified inputs and trans genetics.

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