OSA is in St. Louis this week for the fall meeting of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB). The agenda includes a number of seed-related discussion documents and proposals, from strengthening the National Organic Program’s (NOP) guidance document on the organic seed requirement to clarifying excluded methods definitions and terminology. OSA will give a formal presentation on Friday that covers our State of Organic Seed, 2016 findings and emphasizes the important role of the NOP and NOSB in supporting more rapid progress in developing seed systems that are responsive to the needs of organic farmers. Find our comments here and follow our timely updates via Twitter.
Mark your calendar for the 3rd annual California Organic Seed Summit, Friday, February 17, through Sunday, February 19, 2017, at the Point Montara Lighthouse Hostel in Montara, California. The retreat is a unique opportunity to network, exchange knowledge, and develop collective actions to build sustainable, profitable, and resilient seed systems in California. The program is tailored to the needs and interests of participating California seed stakeholders.
Highlights from past meetings have included peer-to-peer discussions on:
• Seed contracting and economics
• Seed production
• Breeding and variety trials
• Tool sharing and collective marketing efforts
Plant breeders Phil Simon of USDA-ARS and Laurie McKenzie of Organic Seed Alliance pose with chef Karl Holl of LetUmEat at this month’s Variety Showcase in Portland, Oregon.
Earlier this month OSA’s Laurie McKenzie joined 21 plant breeders, 27 chefs, and over 350 attendees for the annual Variety Showcase in Portland, Oregon. The annual Culinary Breeding Network (CBN) event celebrates the work of plant breeders and the culinary creativity of professional chefs. OSA is a proud collaborator of CBN, a collection of plant breeders, seed growers, fresh market farmers, chefs, and produce buyers who are developing and identifying varieties and traits of culinary excellence for vegetable traits in the Pacific Northwest. The Variety Showcase pairs breeders and chefs to show off and engage the public in plant breeding, and introduce new and up and coming vegetables, grains, and herbs.
Join OSA and the Bay Area Seed Hub for a one-day training in Pescadero, California, on November 6, 2016. The workshop will teach farmers how to incorporate seed production into their diversified farm plan. Space is limited so interested participants are encouraged to register early. Register at www.seedalliance.org/events by November 3, 2016.
OSA will provide hands-on instruction to help farmers build their skills in seed production biology, on-farm breeding, variety trials, seed harvesting and cleaning, choosing seed crops for their system and climate, managing population size and isolation distance, and economics and identifying markets.
Registration costs for the one-day training are $25.00, training only, and $35.00 for the training and catered lunch.
The fall meeting for the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) is just around the corner. Join OSA in St. Louis, MO, from November 15th through the 18th, 2016, for timely discussions and public comment opportunities on a number of organic policy proposals. The National Organic Coalition will host its pre-NOSB meeting on November 15 followed by a packed NOSB agenda from the 16th through the 18th. OSA will be giving a formal presentation on State of Organic Seed, 2016 on the last day, so stick around! A number of seed-related documents are on the agenda that week, from ideas for strengthening the requirements for using organic seed to a proposal for clarifying excluded methods terminology. Your feedback on these documents is critical to the policy making process. Find these documents and instructions for submitting written comments here. Written comments are due by October 26, 2016.