A mushroom farm in Arizona may soon have a green label on it.
The owner says he wants to be certified as an organic farm, but the certification system is based on a flawed set of criteria that may not be up to scratch.
“We just want to be part of the solution,” owner David O’Leary said in an interview with the Phoenix New Times.
“There are some things that are just not true.”
The Arizona Department of Agriculture has issued a certification for organic farms that O’Leigh says does not match his operation.
He says that while organic certification is needed to be an integral part of farming, the requirements are flawed and that they need to be revised.
“I’m not a certified organic farmer,” he said.
“My goal is to get a certificate.”
O’Leslie has not heard from the USDA yet, but says that if the certification is not issued, he will start to look for another certified organic farming operation.
“A lot of farmers are not willing to take the time to do it,” O’Lailey said.
If the certification does not arrive soon, O’Olely said that he will seek to have the certification overturned.
“What’s wrong with organic farming is they’re not growing it,” he added.
The Arizona Organic Farming Association (AOFA) is a nonprofit organization that helps to promote organic agriculture in Arizona.
The association says that organic certification can help farmers improve their health and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
“Organic certification gives farmers the confidence to start growing their own food,” AOFA president and CEO Chris Smith said in a statement.
“Agricultural certifying systems help farmers identify where their soil is growing, how to maximize the quality of their soil and how to grow more efficiently.
The benefits of organic certification extend far beyond food safety and greenhouse gas reduction.”
OOFA also points out that certification systems have helped farmers achieve significant profits in the past.
The group credits certification systems for reducing costs, improving quality of soil and improving food safety.
“As organic farmers have grown, so have their costs, as a result of certification systems we are seeing the cost of certification plummet,” Smith said.
The AOFAs recent research found that certifying organic farms saves farmers $1.5 billion in the United States each year.
Organic certification is currently available for farms in Utah, Oklahoma and Nebraska.
The certification is a voluntary process and not required for all farms.
O’Brien said that since his certification was issued, his production has increased significantly.
“You could say we’re the biggest organic farm in the world,” he told the New Times in an earlier interview.
OO’Lely said he was able to grow a small amount of mushrooms and vegetables on his property using organic practices.
“Our customers want to see that,” he explained.
“They want to know that they’re helping the environment and their children and their grandkids can have the best quality food.”
He said that while his organic farm is currently not certified, he believes that organic farming will be in demand in the future.
“It’s going to become a big industry in the near future,” he predicted.