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PRESS COMMENT – Organic Agriculture, Soil Health, and Sustainable Grazing Prioritized

December 18, 2017


Contact: Reana Kovalcik
National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition
202-547-5754, rkovalcik@sustainableagriculture.net

Organic Agriculture, Soil Health, and Sustainable Grazing Prioritized in FY 2018 Conservation Innovation Grants

Washington, DC, December 18, 2017 – The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) applauds USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) for supporting organic farmers, grazing lands conservation, and soil health opportunities through the 2018 Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) Announcement for Program Funding (APF).

USDA announced today the availability of $10 million in competitive grants to help enterprising American farmers and ranchers develop pioneering on-farm conservation tools and practices. Of the available $10 million in grant support, 20 percent will be reserved to support projects focused on historically underserved producers.
Comment from Greg Fogel, NSAC Policy Director:
“The selection of Organic Agriculture Systems, Soil Health, and Grazing Lands as the three priority areas for USDA’s FY 2018 Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) sends a strong signal about where additional investment is needed in the coming years. Conservation agriculture, including organic farming, is an economic driver that provides huge benefits to family farmers while improving natural resources and environmental benefits for the generations to come. It is only by farming with the future at the forefront of our minds that we can deliver to the American people a food and farm system that they can be proud of – one in which family farmers can make an honest living providing safe and abundant food to their neighbors and communities.
With the addition of organic systems as a CIG priority area, USDA is acknowledging the tremendous impact the organic industry has had – and will have – on American agriculture. Combined with the fundamental priorities of soil health and grazing lands – and with much-needed resources directed specifically toward underserved farmers – we expect that the FY 2018 CIG projects will produce groundbreaking, industry-innovating results.
We hope that this acknowledgement by USDA will also send a clear message to Congress about the immense potential to be gleaned from organic and conservation agriculture. Congress has a rare opportunity in the 2018 Farm Bill to set American farmers and ranchers up for a more successful and sustainable future. We hope that they will take this opportunity seriously, and we look forward to working with our 120+ member organizations across the country to ensure that organic and conservation-minded farmers and ranchers are properly recognized in the 2018 Farm Bill.”


About the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC)
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition is a grassroots alliance that advocates for federal policy reform supporting the long-term social, economic, and environmental sustainability of agriculture, natural resources, and rural communities. Learn more and get involved at: http://sustainableagriculture.net

Categories: Conservation, Energy & Environment, Grants and Programs, Organic, Press Releases

2 responses to “PRESS COMMENT – Organic Agriculture, Soil Health, and Sustainable Grazing Prioritized”

  1. I think there should be a big push toward indoor gardening. For example, I recently read an article where people were using shipping containers to grow vegetables. They stacked several containers on top of each other and grew an several layers inside the containers. They used LED grow lights, since they are much more efficient in their power usage. This seems like a good way to increase the organic food supply (pest control is much easier in a container), while also using less land and consuming fewer resources.

  2. […] The growing role of sustainable and organic agriculture in NRCS funded conservation is further exemplified by the 2018 Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) Announcement for Program Funding (APF).  NRCS announced a total of $10 million in funding for three priority areas: soil health, organic agriculture, and grazing systems.  APF descriptions of the soil health and organic priorities reflect many of our earlier CIG recommendations, and the grazing priority could help realize the great potential for advanced management intensive rotational grazing systems to build soil health, sequester carbon, and restore worn-out pasture and rangeland.  For more on the 2018 CIG announcement, see http://sustainableagriculture.net/blog/conservation-innovation-grants-2/, and http://sustainableagriculture.net/blog/press-comment-organic-agriculture-soil-health-sustainable-gra…. […]


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