Impacts of Organic Certification: Stories from the Field


Workshop audio recording from the 2016 MOSES Organic Farming Conference.


Ben Bowell and Mike Bollinger
Saturday 2b

While some farmers follow organic practices but don’t pursue certification, many others have found certification to be a valued tool for their business, their customers and their mission to grow food that is socially and biologically responsible. We’ll examine the benefits of certification as well as common concerns like cost, paperwork, and market value.

Ben Bowell is an organic education specialist for Oregon Tilth and works for the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS). He provides technical assistance, trainings, and technical resources for NRCS staff, agricultural professionals, and producers in order to better support conservation work on organic farms. 

Mike Bollinger operates River Root Farm, a certified organic farm within the city limits of Decorah, Iowa. He grows vegetables, transplants, and seed stock for local and regional wholesale accounts. He co-founded a greenhouse manufacturing company, and has 16,000 sq. ft. of high tunnels and greenhouses to provide certified organic food year round.