Organic Farming Research Foundation
USDA Research Advisory Board Releases
A remarkable document has been released by the National Agriculture Research, Extension, Education and Economics (NAREEE) Advisory Board.
The brief “Report and Recommendations from a Focus Session on Organic Agriculture” notes existing organic activity throughout USDA agencies and makes recommendations for further action. The document is based on a special meeting held by the Board in October 2007. The Advisory Board reports directly to the Secretary of Agriculture, as well as the Congressional Agriculture and Appropriations Committees.
Specifically, the Advisory Board urges that a national program leader position in organic agriculture be established within the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service (CSREES). The Advisory Board also recommends that REE agencies work together to develop a “roadmap for investments” in organic agriculture by October 2008. The Board suggests that a national needs fellowship in organic agriculture be established to train scientists in organic topics, and that CSREES develop action items and timelines for supporting undergraduate and graduate programs in organic and sustainable agriculture.
To meet information needs, the Board recommends that the National Agricultural Library devote the efforts of a full-time librarian to develop an “Organic Agriculture Clearing House” of information that will be useful to Extension personnel, producers, and researchers.
The 4-page report dated March 5, 2008, can be read on the web through this site: http://nareeeab.ree.usda.gov/nal_display/index.php?
Please share this report widely with your colleagues, Deans and Directors, program leaders, and Congressional representatives. The Organic Farming Research Foundation plans to work closely with agencies to help implement the NAREEEAB’s recommendations.
Request for Input: Update Us on Your Activities
OFRF monitors all organic activity being conducted in the U.S. land grant system and the Agricultural Research Service. We are currently updating our State of the States report on such activity. You can help by sending a description of your organic education, research, and/or extension activity to firstname.lastname@example.org. All responses will be acknowledged.