USDA Organic Agriculture Update

Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces Organic Crop Insurance and Other Measures If you’re a beginning farmer currently involved with or interested in organic production, the following announcement from U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack will be of interest. Vilsack spoke to the Organic Trade Association on May 14, 2013, during which he announced changes and new initiatives to support the continued growth of organic agriculture. Specifically, the USDA's Risk Management Agency's (RMA) federal crop insurance program will increase coverage options for organic producers in 2013 and provide more options in 2014. The Secretary also said USDA will provide new guidance on organic production to all USDA agencies; the USDA is now asking each agency to address needs specific to the organic sector in their programs and services where appropriate. “Organic agriculture is one of the fastest growing segments of American agriculture and helps farmers receive a higher price for their product as they strive to meet growing consumer demand,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “These new options will extend the safety net provided by crop insurance and provide fair and flexible solutions to organic producers. Coupled with the new guidance for agencies to support this growing sector, USDA recognizes that organics are gaining market share and is helping boost this emerging segment.” Find the entire press release here.

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