ballot proposal to turn 90% of California agriculture organic by 2050 has failed to gather enough signatures. The California secretary of state's office announced Friday that organic farmer Bob Cannard’s initiative did not qualify for the November ballot.

To reach the measure's goal, Cannard proposed a 1% tax and a 3% annual reduction in the use of conventional pesticides for the next 30 years.

Cannard’s Green String Farm in Petaluma supplies produce to Berkeley’s elite Chez Panisse restaurant.

“I don’t like telling the plants what to do," Cannard told the Press Democrat in 2016. "It’s better to give them a life of choice.”

Knocking on doors during a pandemic to collect signatures is already problematic, and this is a particularly costly year to run a ballot initiative. Petitioners need 600,000 signatures to qualify this year, requiring them to dig deeper than usual to fund signature drives.