SANTA CRUZ, Calif. — California legislative staff joined CCOF—the nation’s leader in advancing organic agriculture—for a tour of CCOF-certified farms in and near California’s Capay Valley on Tuesday November 14, 2017. Paul Underhill hosted the group at Terra Firma Farm and Thaddeus Barsotti hosted the group at Capay Organic Farm.
The tour highlighted the challenges and opportunities to growing organic in California, the capital of organic. California leads the nation in organic sales with $12.84 billion in organic processed product and agricultural commodity sales, yet only 3.5 percent of the state’s agricultural land is farmed organically.
The Capay Valley is a rural valley northwest of Sacramento known for highly diversified organic farming and innovative business models that provide for fresh organic produce throughout the state. Legislators and staff had the opportunity to hear about a range of issues impacting these farms, from water regulations to labor shortages and costs. The tour included an overview of the social, economic, and environmental benefits of organic farming and explained how state policy can help grow organic.
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