Weekly Top 5: Organic News You Need to Know 


1. Whole Foods Shareholders Approve Amazon Deal

Shareholders of Whole Foods Market, Inc. on Wednesday morning voted to approve the company's $13.7 billion in cash acquisition by online retail giant Amazon.com Inc.

John Mackey, co-founder and CEO of the Austin, Texas-based organic and natural grocery chain of 465 stores, who stands to gain nearly $9 million in the transaction, will continue to run the company after the deal closes, expected by the end of the year but contingent on the approval of antitrust regulators.

Learn more here.

Ocean Mist

2. Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) Releases Priority Areas for Next Grant Cycle

The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) is excited to release the priority areas for the next grant cycle. They strongly encourage all farmers and ranchers, graduate students, early career researchers, veterans, and Extension personnel to consider applying for funding. The request for proposals and application instructions will be available on OFRF's website at ofrf.org on September 12, 2017.

Priority areas for the upcoming request for proposals are based on direct feedback from farmers and ranchers across the U.S. 

Learn more here. 

Top Brass

3. NOSB Spring Meeting to be Held in Tucson, AZ, April 25-27

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), the 15-member panel recommending organic policy to the agency's National Organic Program (NOP), will hold its Spring 2018 meeting in Tucson, Ariz., April 25-27 at the Tucson Marriott University Park.

The NOSB typically meets twice per year in various locations around the United States. During meetings, the NOSB listens to public comments, discusses agenda items, and then votes in a public forum.

Organic Grower Summit 2018

At the Tucson meeting, the NOSB will meet to discuss substances petitioned for addition to or deletion from the National List; substances due to sunset from the National List in 2020; and guidance on organic policies. Go here to book reservations online.

Read the full story here

4. Sarah Burns Joins Tanimura & Antle as Senior Manager of Organic Sales

Organics Unlimited

Veteran organic produce sales pro Sarah Burns is the latest addition to Tanimura & Antle’s growing organic team. She joins the company as Senior Manager of Organic Sales.

Sarah joins the Tanimura & Antle team at a time when the organic program is on the verge of significant expansion. Current offerings include organic romaine hearts, organic Artisan Romaine, and organic Artisan Sweet Italian Red Onions. With the desert season, the company’s organic portfolio will expand to include celery, celery hearts, cauliflower, broccoli and bunched items.

Learn more here. 

5. E-Certification Deadline for U.S. Organic Exporters

New European Union (EU) rules requiring electronic export certificates (Certificate of Inspections or eCOI) only for imported organic products goes into effect Oct. 19.

The new rules are aimed at improving the traceability of organic products in an effort to enhance food safety provisions and reduce potential fraud involving organics.

Read the full story here. 

"And all that is now

And all that is gone

And all that's to come

And everything under the sun is in tune

But the sun is eclipsed by the moon"

- Pink Floyd

In Their Words: Steve Koretoff, Purity Organics

In Their Words: Steve Koretoff, Purity Organics


Photo credit: Matthew Malcolm (L-R: David Koretoff, Nick Koretoff and Steve Koretoff)

OPN Connect caught up with Steve Koretoff of Purity Organics to discuss their start in the organic industry, challenges they face, innovations and more.

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OPN Co-Founder Tonya Antle at the 10th Annual Asociación Mexicana de Horticultura Protegida

OPN Co-Founder Tonya Antle at the 10th Annual Asociación Mexicana de Horticultura Protegida


Tonya Antle will be one of three major keynote presenters at the event, which focuses heavily on tomato producers who export their products to North America.  Her presentation to attendees on the state of the organic fresh produce industry is sponsored by AMPHAC sponsor Vitalis Organic Seeds.

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California Growers Eligible for up to $50,000 under the New Healthy Soils Program

California Growers Eligible for up to $50,000 under the New Healthy Soils Program


California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) recently launched their Healthy Soils Program that will provide up to $3.75 million in grants to California growers and ranchers.

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California Moving Toward Strong Heirloom Production

California Moving Toward Strong Heirloom Production


For the next six weeks – through September – California should be at peak production of its organic heirloom tomatoes and other varieties in the category. 

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Organic Grower Summit 2018