Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan with members of Hip Hop Public Health. The organization educates others about the importance of regular exercise and healthy eating.
It’s officially summer and the USDA Farmers Market is back in full swing. An increasingly popular destination for Washington, D.C., residents and visitors of the National Mall, the market regularly attracts hundreds of customers each Friday during the summer and early fall. Come see some of your favorite vendors and USDA staff during the 2012 outdoor season. Read more »
This post is part of the Science Tuesday feature series on the USDA blog. Check back each week as we showcase stories and news from the USDA’s rich science and research portfolio.
Are you an organic grain farmer or thinking of becoming one? Or maybe you’re wondering about strategies for improving soil quality or using less pesticide? If so, then you could benefit from research and outreach conducted by staff at the Sustainable Agricultural Systems Laboratory (SASL) at USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) in Beltsville, MD.
USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture has funded two projects through the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) that are helping ARS-SASL reach organic producers. Both projects are setting a high standard for extension activities. Read more »
After years of working in corporate America, Relinda Walker volunteered to be laid off to come home to Georgia and take over the family farm.
Being first can have its advantages and disadvantages. Relinda Walker knows that all too well.
Walker’s Organic Farm was one of the first organic operations in South Georgia. It took root in 2005 during a time when eating organic was for foodies and white table cloth chefs. Read more »
: A veteran and participant of the Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training program handles living basil at an organic hydroponic farm, which grows plants in water as opposed to soil. The program, started by decorated Marine sergeant Colin Archipley, passes on agricultural knowledge to veterans to not only provide healing through farming but also to support them in starting their own agricultural enterprises.
Compost tea (a mixture of recycled organic matter soaked in water), hydroponic living basil, and organic certification are terms that, at first glance, may not have much of a connection to military veterans. Colin Archipley, a decorated Marine sergeant, and his wife Karen however saw the combination as a win-win when they founded the Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training (VSAT) program outside San Diego, California. Read more »
This is the fifth installment of the Organic 101 series that explores different aspects of the USDA organic regulations.
Through defined farming practices, organic principles promote ecological balance, foster the cycling of resources, and conserve biodiversity. To understand what that means when it comes to the label on your food, those principles require some more explanation.
Let’s take a closer look at a snapshot of sustainable food production, using the lifecycle of organic cheddar to get a fuller picture. Read more »
This is the fourth installment of the Organic 101 series that explores different aspects of the USDA organic regulations.
When the National Organic Program (NOP) declared in late 2009 that it was the beginning of the “age of enforcement,” it renewed its mission to protect the integrity of the USDA organic seal and the products labeled organic.
Enforcement efforts are a critical part of that mission, and investigating violations of the organic standards alleged by complaints is an integral component of the NOP’s work. Read more »