Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack appointed five new members to the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), adding valuable perspectives to the 15-member advisory board. Appointees will begin their 5-year service on the NOSB on Jan. 24, 2017.
The new members will fill positions that are specifically designated to represent various sectors of the organic community. The appointees are: Dr. Asa Bradman, Berkeley, Calif., as an environmental protection and resource conservation expert; Steve Ela, Hotchkiss, Colo., as an organic producer representative; Sue Baird, Bunceton, Mo., as a public interest or consumer interest group representative; Dr. David Mortensen, State College, Pa., as a toxicology, ecology, or biochemistry expert; and Joelle Mosso, Fresno, Calif., as an organic handler representative.
Made up of dedicated public volunteers appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture, NOSB members include four organic farmers; two handlers; three experts in environmental protection and resource conservation; three representatives of public interest or consumer groups; an expert in toxicology, ecology, or biochemistry; an organic retailer; and an organic certifying agent representative.
The NOSB was established under the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 and operates in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act to assist in developing standards for substances used in organic production and to advise the Secretary on aspects of the National Organic Program.
As the agency responsible for overseeing the NOSB, the Agricultural Marketing Service ensures that membership accounts for the needs of the diverse groups served by the USDA. For further information about the NOSB, visitwww.ams.usda.gov/nosb.
USDA is committed to helping organic agriculture grow and thrive through a variety of programs including conservation grants, organic crop insurance, certification cost-share, organic market news and simplified microloans. To learn more about USDA support for organic agriculture, visit our updated organic portal at www.usda.gov/organic.