Farmers discuss organic certification cost share program

4 years 5 months 3 weeks ago Tuesday, April 21 2015 Apr 21, 2015 Tuesday, April 21, 2015 12:50:00 PM CDT April 21, 2015 in News
By: Lina Young, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - While some farmers believe the National Organic Cost Share Program offers incentive for businesses to become certified organic, others aren't so sure the incentives are large enough to overcome the long process involved.

Liz Graznak, owner of Happy Hollow Farm, an organically certified farm in Jamestown, Missouri, said the cost share program is beneficial to organic farmers but doesn't necessarily offer incentives for new farmers to become certified.

"You have to be really invested and know for sure that you're going to be raising food, produce and meat for the long haul. It's too much of a long-term commitment, she said. "Once you've made the decision to become organic, then I would hope that knowing that there's a cost share program out there and that it's available, maybe that would be an incentive to become certified organic."

Graznak said the company she goes through to become certified each year asks for a flat fee, with an additional percentage of the farmer's annual sales. 

"Me, as a small scale vegetable grower in Missouri, I'm not paying the same amount to be certified as like a thousand-acre almond farm in Texas. We all pay the flat fee but the remaining amount is a percentage of our sales," Graznak said.

The Missouri Department of Agriculture announced in late March that funds were available for the 2015 National Organic Cost Share Program through the United States Department of Agriculture.

The Missouri Department of agriculture announced it received more than $127,000 in funds to reimburse farmers and food processors for organic certifications.

The USDA Organic Certification Cost Share Program provides as much as 75% for the certification expenses, up to $750.

Some farmers don't believe that being certified organic offers additional benefit to their operation. 

The Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture is not certified organic but does use organic practices in growing their crops. 

Billy Polanski, executive director of the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture, said it does not use any chemical fertilizers or pesticides at his farm. 

"For us, we're right here in the city and we're a very transparent, accessible operation. People can come here and see exactly what we're doing. All of our sales are direct to the consumer. Where organic is really important is where you're not selling directly to your consumer," Polanski said. 

Polanski said organic certification offers grocery stores a third-party verification that their products are organic, something that his operation does not need.

He said, considering the costs and paperwork that go into becoming organically certified, the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture does not see an additional benefit to become certified organic. 

"We're not going to get higher prices. It's not going to change our practices. For other growers, there's definitely benefits. But for the types of sales we do, we won't see a benefit," Polanski said. 

Graznak said while the cost share program is helpful for farmers, there's a lot of things that need to change in the food system and in consumers' views of organic food to benefit organic farms in the future. 

For farmers to participate in the program, businesses must obtain or renew their certifications, complete an application and document certification costs before September 30.

 

More News

Grid
List
KANSAS CITY - The extent of Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes' leg injury sustained during the team's Thursday night... More >>
41 minutes ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 3:07:00 PM CDT October 18, 2019 in Sports
JEFFERSON CITY - A damaged downtown Jefferson City building is scheduled for demolition, but the owners have filed an appeal... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 2:26:00 PM CDT October 18, 2019 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - A drug company's decision is causing new worries for the families of children with cancer. Vincristine, a... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 1:55:00 PM CDT October 18, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City Police investigated a threat at Thomas Jefferson Middle School on Friday. TJMS sent out... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 1:27:00 PM CDT October 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A woman is dead after a car crash on Highway 63 in Columbia on Thursday afternoon. Columbia... More >>
3 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 11:57:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - Leaders from several organizations from around Boone County gathered Friday to talk about various county-wide goals. The... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 11:10:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in Top Stories
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Authorities are investigating a triple homicide in a Kansas City neighborhood. Police spokesman... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 11:01:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - A man was arrested Thursday evening after police found dangerous drugs during a routine traffic stop. The arrest... More >>
11 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 4:29:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The fifth annual Project Homeless Connect begins Friday. The event provides support for those experiencing homelessness,... More >>
12 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 3:23:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - Sixteen Columbians will travel to Columbia's Japanese sister city, Hakusan City, to reaffirm the relationship between the two... More >>
13 hours ago Friday, October 18 2019 Oct 18, 2019 Friday, October 18, 2019 2:29:00 AM CDT October 18, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — After a controversial sermon at The Crossing on Sunday, the LGBTQ community is calling for those involved to... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 7:41:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Princeton Review named the University of Missouri to three of its "best" lists. MU made the... More >>
21 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 6:16:51 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
Walt Disney once said, "All dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." If your dream... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 5:25:44 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Simmons Bank, the Arkansas-based bank which bought Landmark Bank over the summer, confirmed some positions will be eliminated.... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 5:01:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Former Camden County sheriff's deputy Leonard Jerome Wilson pleaded guilty earlier today to receiving child pornography as... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 4:15:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
BOONVILLE - A grand jury indicted a man on October 11 for one count of child molestation. Robert Bosma,... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 3:33:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
HIGH POINT- In an effort to increase safety at school, High Point school district recently began arming select teachers. ... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 2:21:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri school districts found out Thursday how well they performed over the last school year following the release... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, October 17 2019 Oct 17, 2019 Thursday, October 17, 2019 2:17:00 PM CDT October 17, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 68°
4pm 70°
5pm 68°
6pm 65°
7pm 62°