Organic Acreage Increase Misleading

DanIndustry News Release, Organic

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USDA numbers show organic production acreage is up 20 percent, but the vast majority of the bump comes from four farms in Alaska. Politico reports 700,000 acres in Alaska account for 96 percent of the increase. In 2014, Alaska had just 376 certified organic acres spread between 17 farms; but the following year, 695,000 some acres were certified at four farms. The Organic Trade Association says the new acres stem from a single rangeland certification. While OTA is supportive of all new players in the industry, the Association says the 2015 increase “does not reflect a significant increase in crop acres,” Bering Pacific Ranches received the Alaska certification last year for a range that is home to roughly 6,000 head of cattle.

From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting news service.