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AnnouncementMay 6, 2016

The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is pleased to announce new funding for the 2016 Organic Certification Cost Share Programs.  In addition, AMS is sharing news regarding market trends in organic dairy products, a review by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of inorganic polysulfides as a fungicide-pesticide, and a webinar by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) entitled "Weed Management in Organic Cropping Systems."
Organic Certification Cost Share Programs
AMS announced Wednesday, May 4, that approximately $11.6 million is available through state departments of agriculture to make organic certification more affordable for organic producers and handlers across the country.
The funding, which covers as much as 75 percent of an individual applicant's certification costs, up to a maximum of $750 annually per certification scope, is provided by two programs. To receive cost share assistance, certified organic producers and handlers should contact their state agency as each state has its own guidelines and requirements for reimbursement. Program funding will be available through September 30, 2016 so contact your state agency soon.
For more information:
 Market Trends in Organic Dairy Products

The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) Dairy Market News recently published its bi-weekly National Organic Dairy report. This most recent report states that total organic milk products sales for February 2016, 213 million pounds, were up 7.3% from February last year and up 5.6% January and February compared with the same two months of 2015. This represents the highest volumes of organic milk sales during February any of the years for which AMS has reported data, 2010-2016. Total organic milk sales for January and February also represent the highest volumes for those two months of any year 2010-2016.
 Inorganic Polysulfides - EPA Registration Review
EPA is seeking public comments on the registration review docket for inorganic polysulfides in an effort to assure that it can "... perform its intended function without unreasonable adverse effects on human health or the environment ..." Comments are due by June 10, 2016.
To learn move, view the April 11, 2016 EPA Federal Register Notice "Registration Review; Conventional, Biopesticide and Antimicrobial Dockets Opened for Review and Comment."
Information on the Agency's registration review program is available at
General questions about the EPA Pesticide Registration Review Program may be directed to Richard Dumas who is with the Pesticide Re-evaluation Division of the EPA Office of Pesticide Programs in Arlington, Virginia at 703 308 8015; e-mail:
Questions about this pesticide may be directed to Katherine St. Clair who is with the Pesticide Re-evaluation Division of the EPA Office of Pesticide Programs in Arlington, Virginia at 703 347 8778; e-mail:
Webinar on Weed Management in Organic Cropping Systems
The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), in partnership with Oregon Tilth, is hosting a webinar entitled "Weed Management in Organic Cropping Systems."
The webinar, which will take place on June 7 from 3:00 - 4:00 (EST), will be hosted by William Curran, Ph.D., Professor of Weed Science, and David Mortensen, Ph.D., Professor of Week and Applied Plant Ecology. Drs. Curran and Mortensen are both professors at Pennsylvania State University.
The webinar will discuss the primary weed control strategies for organic systems: the role of prevention, cultural and mechanical control, crop rotation, crop competition, and cultivation. Experts from Penn State will also introduce the Organic Crop Production guide that includes weed management as well as many other organic topics and case studies of successful organic crop farmers.
Pre-registration is not required for this webinar session.  Learn more and join the webinar.
About the Agricultural Marketing Service
USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) facilitates the competitive and efficient marketing of agricultural products. Through its National Organic Program, AMS facilitates trade and ensures the integrity of organic agricultural products by consistently implementing organic standards and enforcing compliance with the regulations throughout the world.
To learn more, view Frequently Accessed Information at:
About the USDA Organic Insider

The USDA Organic Insider informs the organic community on a wide range of functions, including regulatory updates, requests for public comments, and USDA programs and services.

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