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NGO Appeals to Biden Administration and Congress to Reverse Corporate Dominance and Consolidation in Organics

New White Paper Profiles Lobbyist-Affiliated Appointees to National Organic Standards Board

Washington, DC — Continuing a trend well established by prior Republican and Democratic administrations, four of the five newest appointees to the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) have a current or past relationship with the industry’s major lobby group, the Organic Trade Association (OTA). 

The NOSB was created by Congress, through the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990, to act as a buffer against agribusiness lobbyists in recognition that the importance of organic foods and practices to consumers, family farmers, and environmentalists was not shared by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Big Food has consolidated ownership of most of the largest and best-known organic brands. At the same time, many have criticized USDA for “stacking” the board, which is charged with guiding the regulatory oversight of organic farming and food production, with members from, or friendly to, corporate interests. 

OrganicEye, the investigative arm of Beyond Pesticides, has issued an industry briefing paper profiling the reach of the industry’s most powerful lobby group, the Organic Trade Association, into the NOSB, which is designed to establish a direction for the National Organic Program.