Note: We at New Farm would like to
congratulate Jim on his appointment to the NOSB chair.
Jim has helped us and New Farm readers many times over
the past two years explaining complicated policy or
certification issues and he continues to share his expertise
in his columns “Organics in the News” and
“Inspector’s Notebook” We are honored
to consider Jim among New Farm’s collaborators
and we applaud his continued devotion to the organic
October 23, 2004: Jim Riddle of rural
Winona, MN, was elected chair of the National Organic
Standards Board (NOSB) at the Board’s recent meeting
in Washington, DC. The NOSB was established by the Organic
Foods Production Act of 1990 to advise the Secretary
of Agriculture on the establishment and implementation
of the USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP).
Over the past 24 years, Mr. Riddle has been an organic
farmer, inspector, educator, policy analyst, author,
and consumer. He was founding chair of the Independent
Organic Inspectors Association (IOIA) and co-author
of the IFOAM/IOIA International Organic Inspection Manual.
He has trained hundreds of organic inspectors throughout
Mr. Riddle chairs the Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s
Organic Advisory Task Force, and was instrumental in
passage of Minnesota’s landmark organic certification
cost-share program. He holds degrees in biology and
political science from Grinnell College, and works as
an organic policy specialist for the Rodale Institute’s
newfarm.org. In 2003, Mr. Riddle received a one-year
appointment as Endowed Chair of Agricultural Systems
at the University of Minnesota.
Kevin O’Rell of Horizon Organic Dairy, Boulder,
CO, was elected vice-chair. Goldie Caughlin of Puget
Consumers Cooperative, Seattle, WA, was elected secretary.
Riddle, who has served on the NOSB since January 2001,
stated that the recent meeting of the NOSB was the most
productive session he has attended during his time on
the Board. “I appreciate the hard work of NOSB
members and NOP staff in preparing for the meeting,
and the spirit of collaboration expressed by the USDA.
The organic sector is expanding rapidly, and I look
forward to a productive and rewarding year ahead.”
In the coming year, the NOSB will work with the NOP
staff to further refine the materials review process
and develop proposed changes to the organic regulation
to address pet foods, aquatic animals, apiculture, greenhouses,