Farm Bill Contains Hidden Gem

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The farm bill passed a while ago actually contains a program of some benefit to small organic farmers. One of the most commonly cited reasons these farmers cite for not being officially “certified” as organic is the cost of going through the process. Well, the farm bill contains a reimbursement provision that will pay up to 75% of the costs associated with the certification process. I am not sure how much this will help as the maximum reimbursement is limited to $750.00.

I am not sure of the total cost to become certified. I will ask next time I speak to one of these growers and see if this Farm Bill provision is really of any help. I do know that there have been programs in place in the past to help defray these costs. One example is the Agriculture Risk Protection Act of 2000 which was available in 15 states and reimbursed for up to 75 percent of organic certification costs, not to exceed $500. I believe the 2002 Farm Bill authorized some funds to extend this to all 50 states. I suspect the actual certification costs far exceed 500 or even 750 dollars.

Although in Oregon alone, it is estimated that 350 to 400 growers would be eligible for this program, I wonder how many know about it and how many will end up feeling it is worth taking advantage of?

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Will Sig
1 Anna

Will, sometimes anything is better than nothing, and nice to hear that there are many organic farmers and probably it is growing. I find to that sometimes certifications are pain in the neck, and can be very costly. Anna 🙂

Annas last blog post..Halloween Trick-Or-Treat Not This Time

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2 Will

Yes, Anna – I talked to someone this week who said $750.00 barely makes a dent in the cost of getting his small farm certified so he just farms organically, but can’t officially advertise his produce and eggs as organic.

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