Cornucopia News Archive

Stop Dow Chemical’s “Agent Orange” Crops

Monday, August 18th, 2014

Pesticide.NRCSOver a hundred million additional pounds of toxic pesticides associated with cancers and birth defects are coming to a field near you. UNLESS YOU STOP IT!

“Agent Orange” crops are genetically engineered by Dow Chemical to promote the use of 2,4-D, one of the herbicides in the toxic mixture Vietnam veteran’s know as Agent Orange. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is on the cusp of approval, even though they acknowledge the use of this toxic pesticide will skyrocket.  The USDA has opened one last comment period before its final approval of corn and soybeans genetically engineered with resistance to Dow Chemical’s Enlist Duo™herbicide combo of 2,4-D and glyphosate.

There is a 30-day public comment period and it MIGHT BE OUR LAST CHANCE to stop this chemical assault – Sign the petition today!  We’ve posted a link to the USDA’s comment page from the Center for Food Safety.

The comment period closes Sept. 8, 2014.

And here’s a link to the formal comments filed with the USDA earlier by Cornucopia.

USDA Clips Wings of Misleading Organic Marketers

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

CORNUCOPIA, WIS: The USDA, today, announced to industry stakeholders that it would rein-in misleading language on organic packaging that all too often has been suspected of confusing consumers.

usda logoSpecifically, the agency addressed companies marketing food products that have the word “organic” or “organics” in their brand-name.

“Unless a food product is certified organic it cannot display, overtly, the word ‘organic’ on the front panel of the product,” said Mark A. Kastel, Codirector at The Cornucopia Institute, an organic industry watchdog.

Some companies, such as Newman’s Own Organics, have been selling products that do not qualify for the use of the word organic on the front panel and are getting away with misleading messaging to consumers because they have used the word organic in their trade name.

In 2010 Cornucopia filed a formal legal complaint against Newman’s for selling such products as ginger cookies, using a lesser labeling category regulated by the USDA: Made with Organic Ingredients. The USDA dismissed this complaint without explanation.

At that time staff from Cornucopia also briefed USDA Deputy Administrator, Miles McEvoy, who heads the National Organic Program (NOP) on the organization’s concerns, in this matter, and also briefed members of the National Organic Standards Board. Read Full Article »

In the Whole World There’s Only Two Kinds of Power….

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

In the whole world there’s only two kinds of power … Money and People.

And we have the People!

CI_100kFacebookLikes_1aPlease help Cornucopia crack the coveted 100,000 milestone by becoming a friend on Facebook and sharing our Facebook page with your friends, family and colleagues.

Together, farmers and consumers are the only antidote to corporate greed when it comes to protecting the organic label, organic food and organic agriculture.

Although the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, National Public Radio, and other prominent news outlets have all carried the work of The Cornucopia Institute, people power (social media) is so important.

Of our almost 100,000 Facebook friends, our collaborators are consistently sharing information from Cornucopia’s Facebook page with 50,000 to 150,000 of their friends each week.

And they, in turn, share our information with other friends. Last week we had a “reach” of 1.4 million Facebook users. Meaning, 1.4 million citizens had something from the Cornucopia Institute on their Facebook pages that week!

As important as it is appearing in the pages of the more liberal New York Times, or the more conservative Wall Street Journal, farmers and consumers are deciding on their own what information is of value — and we are all connected!

The Cornucopia Institute, like the organic farming movement itself, has supporters from all sides of the political spectrum. What we all agree upon is that organic food pays tremendous dividends to society and that authentic, nutrient-dense food protects and nurtures our families — and that’s worth protecting!

Would you please join with thousands of others in amplifying the voice of The Cornucopia Institute by connecting with us and promoting our Facebook page? Together, we can keep the organic label from being hijacked by giant corporations, and a complacent USDA, that seek to exploit its true meaning in pursuit of greater profit.

Sincerely yours,

Will Fantle, Codirector

Cornucopia Elects New Policy Officers and Advisor

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014
Helen Kees, Board President

Helen Kees, Board President

Wisconsin organic beef and produce farmer Helen Kees was elected board president at Cornucopia’s March 22 annual meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota. Kees, a third generation farmer, with her husband Bob and daughter Chris, holds the distinction of being one of Wisconsin’s first certified organic beef producers. The family direct markets vegetables and beef as well as wholesales to Organic Valley Cooperative.

New York organic dairy farmer Kevin Engelbert was elected board vice president. Engelbert, along with his wife Lisa and family, was the nation’s first certified organic dairy farmer. Their family farm produces a wide variety of organic cheeses, veal, beef, pork, pasture, hay, corn, soybeans, and vegetables. Engelbert, a fifth generation farmer, is a former member of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB).

In addition, Barry Flamm, PhD, previously on Cornucopia’s policy advisory panel, was elected to the board. Read Full Article »

Good Eggs: Scorecard Update in the Works

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014

by Rebecca Thistlethwaite

Credit: Maggie Yount

In 2010, The Cornucopia Institute published a report on organic egg production titled Scrambled Eggs: Separating Factory Farm Egg Production from Authentic Organic Agriculture. We also developed the web-based Organic Egg Scorecard to give consumers and wholesale buyers a more complete story behind the organic egg carton.

This year Cornucopia is completely updating the organic egg report and scorecard. We appreciate the hard work of organic egg farmers in producing one of the most nutritious foods, and we want to assist ethical farmers—the good eggs, if you will—in sharing their stories. Read Full Article »