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Help Keep Organic Standards Intact
Feb 27, 2003

As you may have heard in the news recently, a section of the Omnibus Appropriations Bill threatens to weaken the integrity of the National Organic Program, for which Walnut Acres and organic consumers have worked hard to put in place.

Walnut Acres and the Organic Trade Association are urging as many people as possible to contact their legislators and ask them to support new bills to correct this. This will take 5-7 minutes of your time and will carry quite a bit of weight toward protecting the integrity of organic food standards and your rights as a consumer.

We need your help to build strong bi-partisan support for the Organic Restoration Act that, when passed, will repeal Section 771 from the Omnibus Appropriations Bill.

Please call and/or send an e-mail to your Senators and Legislators by following these simple instructions:

1. Follow the link below to identify & get contact info for your Senators and Representative in the House:


http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm
http://www.house.gov/house/MemberWWW_by_State.html
Call &/or e-mail your Senators and Representative to tell them:
"My name is ____ and I live in ____, and I am contacting you because I am deeply concerned about a threat to the USDA's established organic standards that is present in Section 771 of the Omnibus Appropriations Bill. I urge you to support the Organic Restoration Act.
1. Repealing Section 771 from the Omnibus Appropriations Bill is in the interest of consumers, and organic farmers.
2. Repealing this section will encourage continued growth of organic agricultural production in the United States, one of the bright spots of U.S. agriculture overall.
3. Repealing this section prevents special interests from circumventing new national regulations that were in public discussion for over a decade.

Also, share the following reasons why repealing this offending language is important to the entire organic industry:
-The public wants stringent organic standards, and the requirements to feed livestock organic feed is crucial for organic livestock production.
-Creating the National Organic Standards was an excellent example of democracy at work. Changes to the standards should also be done in an open, democratic fashion, not behind closed doors.
-Underhanded efforts to hijack U.S. organic standards threaten the livelihood of some of America’s most dynamic and innovative farmers, and one of the few sectors of agriculture that has been growing consistently for over a decade.
-There are plenty of organic livestock producers from both large and small businesses who have been meeting the feed provisions of the new national organic standards, and there is plenty of feed available.
-Price has never been a factor in requiring organic inputs. Provisions that make following the standards contingent on the price of inputs put farmers on an uneven playing field.
-Organic livestock provides milk, eggs, meat, cheese, wool, and more, forming the basis of hundreds of products.

Thank you for joining Walnut Acres in the fight to preserve these important standards!





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