The Organic Trade Association (OTA) and National Latino Farmers and Ranchers Trade Association (NLFRTA) are forming a strategic alliance that the groups say will help them “strengthen their impact on national public policy.”
The groups say the agreement will also aid producers in the transition to organic production as the NLFRTA is also being added to OTA's Farmer Advisory Council.
“At the farmers' markets, on the farm, and at the store – wherever we are selling – our customers are asking us about whether or not our products are certified organic,” NLFRTA Executive Director Rudy Arredondo said. “We want to be able to serve more of those customers and to bring that price premium to more of our producers, but our farmers and ranchers need support to make the transition. Our partnership with the Organic Trade Association will amplify our advocacy and help us get more Latino producers connected with organic."
In a release, the groups said the partnership "enhances both organizations’ ability to grow and protect U.S. organic agriculture and advance their shared federal policy agendas."
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Laura Batcha, OTA's executive director and CEO, said she was glad to see NLFRTA take a more active role in organic production and will "look forward to the fresh insights and perspectives they bring."
"This is an important partnership for the Organic Trade Association, one that will help us to be a better partner and ally to the many farmers and ranchers out there who are dedicated to sustainable agriculture, but not yet organic certified,” she said.
NLFRTA has selected Eugene Pickett, a New Mexico producer who is currently the group's operations manager, as the organization's representative on OTA's council.
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