OFA Heads to Washington, D.C. to Advocate for Farm Bill Policies

Organic Farmers Association Heads to Washington, D.C. to Advocate for Farm Bill Policies 

Members and staff of the Organic Farmers Association will be in the nation’s capital March 4-7 to meet with representatives in the House and Senate, as well as staff on the House and Senate Agriculture committees, to advocate for Farm Bill policies and their potential impact on the organic farming community.

This influential year marks the reauthorization of the Farm Bill, a piece of extensive agricultural legislation that is updated every five years and has a major impact on food and farming systems. Due to congressional delays, a Continuing Resolution is in place that funds the legislation through September 2024, but the remaining months before final passage remain a critical time for advocates to earn and keep support. 

According to Executive Director, Kate Mendenhall, “Farmers are best suited to educate changemakers about the challenges they face on the farm and need to be part of crafting the solutions to grow organic farming in this country. Bringing organic farmers to Washington, D.C. puts their voices front and center, and is a high priority for Organic Farmers Association.”

The policies being advocated for aim to make USDA programs work for organic farmers by increasing support and assistance. This includes increasing organic infrastructure to create new regional programs that increase organic production, addressing challenges for climate and supply chain resilience, and strengthening local food systems. Members will also be asking lawmakers to provide immediate support for organic dairy farms to address the dramatically increased organic input costs putting many family-farms out of business. 

Organic farmers face numerous hurdles, including economic challenges and concerns about organic import fraud, and better crop insurance options for organic farmers. The advocacy efforts of OFA’s members aim to address these challenges through policies that will ensure a better future for the industry. By making USDA programs work for organic farmers, organic farmers will be able to pave the way for a thriving and sustainable organic farming market and healthy rural and urban communities. For more information about the farm bill policies OFA and organic farmers are advocating for, visit www.OrganicFarmersAssociation.org.