Media/News Archive

What Walmart’s Big Organic Announcement Means for Organic Veterans

Thursday, April 17th, 2014

Could the chain’s entrée into private-label organics cheapen the gold standard in food production?

Rodale News
by Emily Main

wild-oats-marketplace-logoWalmart has just announced that it’s going to throw its massive size and influence behind the organic food movement. By relaunching a historic brand, Wild Oats, which used to be Whole Foods’ biggest rival, the chain is pledging to make organic affordable to all and sell the Wild Oats brand of packaged foods at 25 percent less than its organic competitors.

More organic options at a cheaper price is hardly a bad thing, and the organic industry seems to be taking the huge retailer’s announcement with a grain of cautious optimism. But there are also a lot of potential downfalls: Where will a chain of 3,800 stores get enough organic ingredients to satisfy the 91 percent of shoppers who Walmart claims want organic food? Will organic farms have to compromise on their standards to meet the demand? Read Full Article »

Vermont Senate Votes 26-2 for GMO Labeling

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Vermont one step closer to becoming first state to enact such a law

Burlington Free Press
by Terri Hallenbeck

gmo.protest.smMONTPELIER — The Senate gave a decisive 26-2 vote Tuesday for a bill that would require labeling of foods that contain genetically modified ingredients, a strong indication that Vermont could become the first state in the nation to enact such a law.

“We are saying people have a right to know what’s in their food,” said Senate President Pro Tempore John Campbell, D-Windsor.

Campbell and other supporters argued that they believe they have written a bill that is legally defensible. They nonetheless created a fund in the legislation to help pay the state’s legal bills, as many assume that food manufacturers will sue. Read Full Article »

Funding Restored for Beginning Farmer Training Programs

Monday, April 14th, 2014

NSAC’s Blog

Contact: Juli Obudzinski, Senior Policy Specialist, 202-547-5754


April 11, 2014, Washington, DC – Today USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the availability of $19 million in funding for beginning farmer training grants through the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (BFRDP).  This highly successful initiative, administered by USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, provides competitively awarded grants to academic institutions, state extension services, producer groups, and community organizations to support and train new producers across the country.

“BFRDP is the only federal program exclusively dedicated to training the next generation of farmers and ranchers,” says Juli Obudzinski, Senior Policy Specialist with the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition.  “Although the program has only been around for a few years, young farming communities around the country are already seeing real impacts on the ground.” Read Full Article »

Monsanto’s Being a Jerk Again, This Time in Oregon

Friday, April 11th, 2014

Rodale News
by Leah Zerbe

I have a right- parentsA potential GMO ban in Oregon’s Jackson County has drawn a slew of corporate money into the state, another sign that international chemical and GMO manufacturers will dump massive bucks into an attempt to restrict local and state government’s and communities’ right to govern themselves.

These companies have a lot to lose if consumers and governments start requiring labeling or implanting GMO planting bans. Companies like Monsanto make billions selling farmers genetically modified seeds and the chemicals required to be used with those seeds. Read Full Article »

Death on the Farm

Friday, April 11th, 2014

by Max Kutner

Credit: NRCS

On January 21, 2010, a cold, clear day, Dean Pierson woke up early, as usual. The 59-year-old put on a pair of blue jeans and a hooded coat before the sun was up, then went to his barn, turned on the lights, closed all the doors and windows, powered off the fans and cranked up the volume on the radio. He then shot each of his milking cows with a .22-caliber N1 carbine rifle, about 51 of them, between their horns and eyes, hitting their brains and killing them instantly. Pierson then sat down in a wooden chair with an upholstered seat, pulled a ski mask over his face, picked up a 12-gauge pump-action shotgun and shot himself once in the chest. Read Full Article »