• General

    OEFFA Soil Health Task Force Petition

    Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) members know that healthy soil is foundational to sustainable agriculture. While healthy soil is the basis for healthy crops, animals and humans, decision makers at the statehouse overwhelmingly are not talking about this important issue. We believe in an Ohio where farmers who are curious about experimenting with soil health are supported and farmers who are implementing soil health practices are recognized. That’s why OEFFA, the Ohio Soil Health Initiative and allies are urging decision makers to pass legislation that creates a Soil Health Task Force as a first step towards developing farmer informed solutions that support health soil principles and practices. This…

  • General

    Beginning Farmer Bill on the Move

    Farmland Access Legislation Moving in the Senate Ohio House Bill 95- The Family Farm ReGeneration Act The end of first year of Ohio’s 134th General Assembly brought the passage of Ohio House Bill 95 (HB 95). The Family Farm ReGeneration Act passed with almost unanimous support (Republican House Member Thomas Brinkman, Jr. was the only dissenting vote). OEFFA has been championing legislation to alleviate the overwhelming challenges beginning farmers face in finding affordable farmland for several years. Ohio can be proud to rank 6th in the nation in the number of beginning farmers. If we are to enjoy the food security and economic development benefits of agriculture, we must ensure…

  • General

    Why Farm Bill Conservation Programs Matter (and What You Can Do About It)

    good conservation practices = healthy soil and clean water = resilient farms = nutritious food = a vibrant society OEFFA’s member-farmers work hard every day to practice good conservation on their land.  They plant cover crops to feed the soil and protect it from erosion.  They create buffers of grass, trees, and shrubs, that draw carbon from the atmosphere and protect our waterways and find creative ways to improve habitat for pollinators, birds, and other wildlife.  Farmers are increasingly looking to expand their practices to include no- and reduced-tillage systems, rotational grazing, alley crops, and agroforestry.  All of these practices can help farmers produce food while also improving soil conditions…

  • General

    Building Soil Health: Strategy Meeting

    Wednesday, December 15, 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Register Now At the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA), we know that healthy soil is the foundation for sustainable agriculture. We also know the process of transitioning to stronger soil health practices must be informed and led by the experiences of farmers.  Over the past year, OEFFA held listening sessions with more than 50 farmers across Ohio. At these meetings, we consistently heard a need for stronger farmer-to-farmer soil health networks and greater investment in soil health practices.  That’s why we are bringing together folks statewide for a virtual meeting on December 15 at 7 p.m. At this meeting, we will take…

  • General

    Anti-Trust, Take Two

    Seed Competition Last month, Biden signed an Executive Order on Promoting Competition in the American Economy. This EO is exciting in many ways, from the sheer scope of its ambition to its acknowledgment of some of the many ills that have plagued American farmers, from unfair contract farming to retaliation. More on that EO can be found here. One of the most exciting facets of the Order, however, only received a few sentences’ worth of attention. The Order charged the Secretary of Agriculture, in conjunction with the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, with submitting a report to the White…

  • General

    Biden Expands Antitrust Protections in Agriculture

    This first in a series of two blog posts was written by OEFFA policy intern, Eliza VanNess, a second year law student at the Ohio State University. On July 9th, President Biden signed an Executive Order (EO) on Promoting Competition in the American Economy, which covers a variety of industries including the agricultural sector. The Order identifies consolidation as a threat to the survival of small family farms and proposes a number of antitrust measures to bolster support for these farmers.  This EO is the latest in a long tradition of antitrust regulations spurred on by the agricultural industry. The most sweeping regulation was the Packers and Stockyards Act (PSA),…

  • General

    New Pandemic Cover Crop Program is a First Step

    June 10, 2021 This blog a re-posting from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition Last week, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a new Pandemic Cover Crop Program (PCCP), which will offer a $5 per acre premium discount to producers who planted qualifying cover crops during the 2021 crop year and enrolled in eligible federal crop insurance policies. The PCCP is administered by the Risk Management Agency (RMA) and funds for this program are coming from the USDA Pandemic Assistance for Producers (PAP) program.  To receive this premium benefit, eligible farmers must file their acreage report with FSA by next Tuesday, June 15, 2021. For additional details about the…

  • Conservation,  General

    Unpacking Land Policy and What is Needed for a More Equitable Farming Future

    This guest post was written by Holly Rippon-Butler, Land Campaign Director with the National Young Farmers Coalition. The Coalition is a national advocacy network of young farmers fighting for the future of agriculture. Editor’s Note: To begin helping to address the challenges identified in this report, OEFFA is working to pass the Family Farm ReGeneration Act. The bipartisan House Bill 95, which would help beginning farmers access farmland and provide greater resilience to Ohio’s food system, has cleared its House committee hurdles and awaits a full House floor vote. If you care about these issues and would like to get involved, complete this petition to the Ohio legislature and call…

  • General

    Making a Difference Together: Six Conference Conversations You’ll Want to Be a Part of

    For many, getting the OEFFA conference schedule of workshops, keynotes, and networking events can make you feel like a kid in a candy store. There’s so much good material to choose from and opportunities to connect with old friends and make new ones, all while working collectively toward a healthier future. The 2022 conference will be no exception. If you want to see real change in our food and farming system—changes that support organic and regenerative farmers and invest in healthful local and regional food choices—you’re going to want to be a part of these key conversations at the 2022 OEFFA conference, Rooted and Rising, February 12 online and February…

  • General

    What Does a Biden Administration Mean for Sustainable Agriculture?

    We recently survived one of the most contentious elections in recent memory. Whomever your preferred candidate, we now have a declared winner in Joe Biden. But what does that mean for sustainable and organic agriculture, local food systems, and conservation policy? One of the priorities of President-Elect Joe Biden’s agricultural agenda is to strengthen anti-trust enforcement. According to the campaign website, “American farmers and ranchers are being hurt by increasing market concentration. Biden will make sure farmers and producers have access to fair markets where they can compete and get fair prices for their products—and require large corporations to play by the rules instead of writing them—by strengthening enforcement of…