Have something you would like to share with the USDA who makes the rules for organic?? This is your chance. Sorry I just saw this and wanted to be sure you have a little chance to get your 2 cents in if you want

Vicki Morrone
Organic Farming Specialist
Center For Regional Food Systems at MSU
480 Wilson Rd. Room 303
East Lansing, MI 48824
517-353-3542/517-282-3557 (cell)
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From: National Organic Coalition <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: "[log in to unmask]" <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 7:40 PM
To: Vicki Morrone <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: NOC News -- NOSB comments due Monday Sep. 24

Submit Your Comments to NOSB 
September 19, 2012
Dear Vicki,   
See these topics below:
USDA NOSB Meeting 10/15 - 10/18
Submit Your Comments to NOSB
You're Invited -- Save the Date - Pre NOSB Meeting October 14
IFOAM Leadership training course
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~NOP Logo
Monday October 15 - Thursday October 18, 2012
Watch the NOSB website for upcoming
Agenda and comment information

Location:   Providence Biltmore  

11 Dorance Street, Providence, RI  02903 




BOARD What YOU Think About Organic Topics 
Comments due Monday Sep. 24, 2012 



The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) meets twice a year, and has a  long list of topics that they are looking for comments from the public.  See the NOSB Agenda with all their proposals here.

To submit comments, you need to use the on-line comment submission form:  and comment by the end of the day, Monday, September 24, 2012.

The National Organic Coalition will be submitting comments as well -- while all of ours are not ready for prime time, we do have some hot topics we thought you might be interested in commenting on.  Please examine the Petitions in front of the Board and feel free to adapt our language to your comments if you find it useful.

Conflict of Interest (COI)


The NOSB is made up of representatives of various interests in the organic community, and that is a really good thing.  But it does mean that there will always be conflicts of interest.  We need a concise, easily implementable COI policy that discloses to the NOSB,  the public  and to USDA/NOP,relevant conflicts that a board member has on a specific issue.  This needs to happen in public, and the NOSB needs to be in charge of this for their Board and for their meetings.  The NOP needs to enforce applicable laws and regulations, but the NOSB should adopt and implement a policy of full public disclosure that focuses on the likelihood of direct financial gain to be derived from a decision.  This decision cannot happen behind closed doors by the Agency alone.


Synthetic Nutrients in Infant Formula


We oppose adding any of the petitioned synthetic nutrients and preservatives to organic infant formula [they include: Ascorbyl Palmitate, Beta-carotene, Lutein, Lycopene, L-Carnitine, L-Methionine, Nucleotides, and Taurine -- see the Handling Sub-committee proposals here 


Nutrients in organic infant formula should be natural and organic. Synthetic preservatives (antioxidants) are prohibited for use in organic and cannot be allowed even if they are synthetic forms of vitamins. Over-fortification of infant formula should be avoided because infants do not have the ability to process excess nutrients-only that fortification required by law should be allowed. The Precautionary Principle should certainly be the overarching principle when it comes to infants (above all else), since small mistakes can have such serious effects on the lives of children through adulthood.




NOC concurs that both the NOP rule and the Principles of Organic Farming recognize the value of fostering biodiversity in organic production systems. NOC has consistently supported the NOSB's recommendations that have encouraged NOP to implement the existing standards on biodiversity and natural resource conservation.  

* Technical Reviews should report on a material's positive effects on biodiversity, as well as negative impacts.  

* NOP should add a Guidance or an Instruction to the NOP Handbook and  

* NOP should include biodiversity standards in the trainings that NOP provides for accredited certifiers.   

* Even though they mainly deal with indoor environments, Handling/Processing operations do have opportunities for addressing biodiversity and natural resource conservation related to landscaping, management of nearby land, pest management, management of wastes and wastewater, air handling, and habitat plantings.


"Inert" ingredients


We applaud the proposal by the crops committee to review all so-called "inerts" (which are not really inert, but may have a wide range of human and ecological effects) used in organic production over the next five years. This plan is excellent and necessary. A specific well laid-out plan such as this can help in highlighting the necessity of increased resources needed by the NOP to help the NOSB complete this work. The NOSB should move forward on these reviews.

To submit comments, you need to use the on-line comment submission form: and comment by the end of the day, Monday, September 24, 2012.

               You're Invited to NOC pre-NOSB Meeting

                  Sunday, October 14, 2012, 12:30 -- 6:00 pm  

                          (That's the day before the NOSB)  


                          Topics will include:

                            Federal Organic Policy update

Farm Bill Updates

AC21 Updates

NOSB and NOP topics 

and More!  


 Location:   Providence Biltmore  

11 Dorance Street, Providence, RI  02903 



Coffee/Drinks & Snacks are included (Lunch on your own prior to meeting) 

Please RSVP to Liana Hoodes via email at:

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IFOAM logo


IFOAM Organic Leadership Course  
fosters innovation, connections

The Intern
ational Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) will hold an Organic Leadership Course in North America in 2013. Participants will gain knowledge, skills and a comprehensive understanding of organic principles and the organic sector in North America and globally while they develop leadership skills and deepen their networks of like-minded people. With over 150 hours of comprehensive training and intensive skill-building, this course is ideal for preparing managers and staff to be leaders and spokespeople. Please spread the word about this program and encourage people with leadership potential to apply. If your business would like to reach out to these leaders or provide scholarships for deserving participants, funding opportunities are available. Contact: Katherine DiMatteo, the North American regional partner for the course. 

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Contact Information:                                
Liana Hoodes                                                  

National Organic Coalition        National Organic Action Plan        

3540 Route 52, Pine Bush, NY  12566
Phone and Fax:  845-744-2304 

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