Sen. Pat Roberts: ‘Uncertainty and dysfunction have overtaken’ USDA organic program

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The far-reaching difficulty that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has in determining whether imported “organic” food meets standards or is fraudulent means that it’s hard to know what products can be trusted, a grain industry executive told a Senate committee [July 13] as lawmakers prepare the next farm bill.

The testimony comes after news that millions of pounds of questionable “organic” products have reached U.S. ports.

Given the current challenges of enforcement, “it is unreasonable to accept that grain being imported into the U.S. as organic has been adequately validated,” Kenneth Dallmier, president of Clarkson Grain, said in his testimony.

Sen. Pat Roberts

The Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry is collecting information as lawmakers prepare the next major agriculture legislation. It appears that one key lawmaker is ready to shake up the way the USDA regulates what can be sold as “organic.”

“It seems that uncertainty and dysfunction have overtaken the National Organic Standards Board and the regulations associated with the National Organic Program,” Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), chairman of the committee, said in his opening remarks.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: ‘Uncertainty and dysfunction’ have overtaken USDA program for organic foods, key lawmaker says