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Organic Production

Organic Production

Organic production of agricultural products helps to sustain and enhance the health of ecosystems and organisms.  Organic production relies on a form of farming which avoids or largely excludes the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, plant growth regulators, and livestock additives.  To the extent possible, organic farmers rely on crop rotations, crop residues, animal manures and mechanical cultivation to protect the soil from erosion, maintain soil productivity, supply plant nutrients, and to control weeds, insects and other pests.

As compared with conventional agricultural production techniques, organic farming practices typically result in improved water quality, reduced soil erosion and overall improved soil quality.  Soil organic matter is increased by using manures and compost as fertilizers, growing cover crops and green manure, practicing crop rotations, and by growing more acres of perennial crops.  Water Quality is often improved by the avoidance of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.

Consumers are increasingly demanding more organic products and are willing to pay the extra premium for them.  Many VT producers see this trend as an opportunity to diversify their farms and increase their incomes.

Organic Farming Information Links:

ATTRA (Appropriate Technology Transfer for Rural Areas)

The ATTRA program provides information to farmers and other rural users on a variety of sustainable agricultural practices that include both cropping and livestock operations. The program encourages agricultural producers to adopt sustainable agricultural practices which allow them to maintain or improve profits, produce high quality food and reduce adverse impacts to the environment.


NOFA VT (Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont)

´┐ŻNOFA Vermont is a non-profit association of farmers, gardeners, and consumers working to promote an economically viable and ecologically sound Vermont food system for the benefit of current and future generations´┐Ż.  


National Organic Program (USDA Agricultural Marketing Service)

In the United States, the National Organic Program (NOP) is the federal regulatory framework governing organic food.  The NOP is administered by the US Department of Agriculture. 


Organic Farming Research Foundation

OFRF strives to foster the improvement and widespread adoption of organic farming practices.

The OFRF mission:

        - To sponsor research related to organic farming;

        - To disseminate research results to organic farmers and to growers interested in adopting organic

           production systems; and

        - To educate the public and decision-makers about organic farming issues.


USDA Economic Research Service (Organic Production Data Sets)

data representing the extent of certified organic farmland acreage and livestock in the United States are presented in tables showing the change in U.S. organic acreage and livestock numbers through 2005, including the number of certified operations, by State.


UVM Center for Sustainable Agriculture

The Center for Sustainable Agriculture was established in 1994 as a unit within the University of Vermont to integrate university and community expertise to promote sustainable farming systems throughout Vermont and the region.  We operate as an integral part of University of Vermont Extension , collaborating with faculty and staff throughout the state.  Our programs always involve farmers, the University, and other organizations.


Vermont Pasture Network

The Vermont Pasture Network (VPN) is a collaboration between the UVM Center for Sustainable Agriculture, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative (GLCI), the Vermont Grass Farmers' Association (VGFA), and UVM Extension. VPN's goal is to work cooperatively with farmers, other state and regional organizations, and agency personnel to promote and enhance successful grass-based livestock production throughout Vermont.

Last Modified: June 23, 2010