ORGANIC CENTER FOR EDUCATION AND PROMOTION INC

aka The Organic Center, Inc.   |   Washington, DC   |  www.organic-center.org

Mission

Our Vision is a sustainable and secure food system that promotes the health of humans and the environment. Our mission is to conduct and convene credible, evidence-based science on the environmental and health effects of organic food and farming and communicate the findings to the public.

Ruling year info

2002

Principal Officer

Jessica Shade

Main address

444 North Capitol St NW Ste 445-A

Washington, DC 20001 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

02-0626006

NTEE code info

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (K05)

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (B05)

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (C05)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Many substances used in conventional agriculture are known to pose serious health risks to farm workers and agricultural communities, and research suggests that chronic low level exposures may also pose health risks to consumers. Organic farming methods also benefit the environment by supporting biodiversity, improving the health of our soils, reducing water pollution and helping to mitigate climate change. In spite of these benefits, the majority of agricultural research dollars in the U.S. are still devoted towards progressing conventional industrial farming methods instead of organic methods and relatively little investment is directed at understanding the associated health and environmental risks. The Organic Center is working to advance a sustainable, organic food system that supports healthy people, healthy environments and healthy communities for generations to come.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Nutrition

Enhancing the nutritional quality of food through organic farming.

Population(s) Served

Reducing exposures to pesticides and animal drugs through organic farming, with emphasis on chemicals with the potential to disrupt developmental pathways.

Population(s) Served

Combating global warming through sequestering carbon in agricultural soils and improving the efficiency of nitrogen and energy use in production agriculture.

Population(s) Served

Identifying “Good Agricultural Practices” with potential to lessen the severity of food safety risks, including bacterial pathogens and mycotoxins.

Population(s) Served

Conducting research on advanced organic systems to help meet global food security needs.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Total number of conferences held

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Climate Change

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

The Organic Confluences is an annual Summit organized by the Organic Center in collaboration with the USDA that brings together farmers, scientists, extension agents, industry members.

Number of research studies conducted

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

The Organic Center collaborates with academic and governmental agencies to conduct research filling gaps in our knowledge about organic food and farming.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

To engage and develop partnerships with universities, research institutions, federal agencies, organic farmers, and food systems advocates that are working to improve and transform agricultural systems.
To stimulate and participate in research that will (1) fill knowledge gaps about the health and environmental benefits of organic farming and (2) increase the viability and sustainability of the U.S. agricultural system.
To empower consumers to make choices that will improve their health, the health of the environment and the health of their communities through education and outreach.
To serve as a resource for the public, policy makers, scientists, farmers and industry on the science supporting sustainable organic food and farming.
To strengthen and expand organic practices and commodities which reduce the use of toxic, synthetic chemicals and have clear benefits to human health and the environment.

Our strategies include:
Empowering the consumer: By communicating credible, evidence-based science that supports the health and environmental benefits of sustainable organic food and farming we empower the everyday consumer to make educated choices that support human and environmental health.
Providing access to information: By serving as a resource for the public, policy-makers, scientists, farmers and industry on the science supporting sustainable organic food and farming.
Advancing research: By facilitating, supporting and disseminating scientific research we aim to (1) foster a more complete understanding about the health and environmental benefits of organic food and farming and (2) improve the efficacy and sustainability of organic farming methods

The Organic Center’s science education programs are directed towards diverse audiences including consumers, policy makers, scientists, and industry members, and we have extensive capabilities for meeting our goals. We strive to empower consumers to support sustainable food systems by enabling them to make educated choices in the market place. We meet this goal by transforming evidence-based science that supports the health and environmental benefits of sustainable organic food and farming into forms that are easily understandable and which spark further interest and enthusiasm. Additionally, we serve as a resource to policy-makers, scientists, farmers and industry on research that is critical for decision-making. We meet this goal by actively disseminating in depth and up-to-date information about scientifically backed best practices in farm management, the health and environmental benefits of sustainable organic food and farming, and concerns that drive consumer choices. Furthermore, we facilitate interaction and communication among these diverse stakeholder groups. Our current outreach projects include:

The Organic Center Website: On our website we publish non-technical summaries of the most recent peer-reviewed scientific research, blogs on the science behind key issues in the field of organic agriculture, recipes which highlight commodity specific research findings, interviews with scientists to bring a spotlight on some of the most interesting, cutting-edge work that is being done in the organic field and fact sheets to provide the public with clear and concise information on the benefits of organic food and farming.

The Organic Center Newsletter: We publish bi-weekly newsletters for the public and industry with updates on current Organic Center projects and recently published science of interest.

Biannual Publications: We review, compile, and synthesize literature on current topics in human and environmental health as they relate to food systems to produce comprehensive and understandable publications on key topics of interest.

Farmer Focused Publications: We create and publish educational materials for farmers that are focused on improving agricultural sustainability and overcoming production challenges.

Workshops, Webinars and Presentations: We actively participate in grower meetings, industry events, and scientific conferences to educate, learn from and engage diverse stakeholders.

We have been able to accomplish several projects focused on human and environmental health. For example, here are some of our most recent projects:

Pesticide, Hormone, & Antibiotic Presence in Milk
This peer-reviewed and published project looks at the extent to which hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides used in milk production can be detected in retail conventional milk, as compared to organic milk. Specifically, cow’s milk was tested for a wide variety of growth hormones, pesticides, and antibiotics. Organic milk tested clean, with no detectable levels of synthetic residues, as compared to conventional milk where over 60% of samples showed contaminant resides. Results were highlighted in media outlets such as USA Today.

Farmworker Health
This project details the science on the health effects of occupational exposure to pesticides for agricultural workers and how the organic regulations reduce these exposures, providing a safer working environment on the farm. It also highlights techniques that are used on organic farms that can be incorporated by all farmers – regardless of farming system.

Combating the Development of Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria
The Organic Center released a report on organic food and farming as a tool to combat antibiotic resistance and protect public health. This report takes an in-depth look at the role of antibiotic use in conventional agricultural livestock production in contributing to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. It covers everything from mechanisms by which resistance develops in bacteria to how organic agriculture provides a simple and effective means to combat the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and to protect the health of consumers.

Pollinator Health
The Organic Center released a Pollinator Health report that documents the benefits of organic on pollinator populations. The publication reviews specific cases of pesticide impacts on pollinator health, and discusses the lesser-known benefits of organic farms, such as more diverse habitat for pollinators and an increase in food sources.

Next, we will focus projects on climate change, the organic benefits of products such as meat, and soil health.

Financials

ORGANIC CENTER FOR EDUCATION AND PROMOTION INC
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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ORGANIC CENTER FOR EDUCATION AND PROMOTION INC

Board of directors
as of 2/5/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Todd Linsky

Todd Linsky Consulting

Asa Bradman

Center for Environmental Research and Children’s Health (CERCH), University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health

Bob Kaake

Annie’s, Inc.

Todd Linsky

Todd Linsky Consulting

Jessica Lundberg

Lundberg Family Farms

Melody Meyer

Source Organic Consulting

Laura Batcha

Organic Trade Association

Logan Peterman

Organic Valley

Mark Squire

Good Earth

Marci Zaroff

Metawear