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Organic Insider from the Second Quarter of 2018

(Important: We are building a new back-end for Organic Insider and sometime over the next few days, accessing the links to previous newsletters will require that you log in and create a password.)

At the end of each quarter, I will be doing a recap newsletter for those individuals who may have missed an Organic Insider or want to revisit a previous issue. I know that everyone receives a tremendous amount of email, and this gives people a quick and easy way to get caught up.

Here are the newsletters from the second quarter of 2018:

* Cornucopia’s very damaging report about fraudulent organic imports from Turkey and the USDA’s inability to stop this problem.

* Clearing up the confusion around “organic cannabis.”

* How the Real Organic Project is going to help ensure that organic is what farmers and consumers expect it to be.

* Two things to consider when marketing regenerative products.

* A look at the U.S. organic sales data for 2017 and asking the question whether the industry is maturing or not.

* How the USDA’s rejection of the check-off program could turn into a very positive outcome.

* Reading between the lines in the USDA’s proposed GMO-labeling standards.

* Recap of the National Organic Standards Board Meeting in Arizona and how addressing fraud was a clear priority.

* The harm that the House version of the farm bill could cause to the organic sector.

* What journalists who cover the organic food industry would like you to know.

* The sad reality of how the USDA has completely marginalized the National Organic Standards Board.

* Farmers suffered $400M in losses due to fraudulent imported organic grains.

Have a great day!

Max Goldberg, Founder

This Week's News Items

Weekly News Summaries

First Course
The New York Times

Agroecology is Taking Hold Across the World -- Fortunately

By Daniel Moss and Mark Bittman

An encouraging and excellent piece in the NYT about how agroecology is gaining momentum around the globe, much to the chagrin of the major chemical companies.

Business Insider

"Microtrips" are Up 8.7% at Whole Foods

By Dennis Green

Since Amazon acquired Whole Foods, microtrips, visits lasting less than five minutes, are up nearly 9%. This also sheds light on the company's retail strategy - focusing on convenience.

High Country News

Problems with GMO-Grass are Starting to Surface

By Julia Rosen

It should come as no surprise that GMO-grass is beginning to cause real problems in Oregon, and Big Ag is off the hook in dealing with the mess.

Second Course

How Thrive Market is Partnering with Brands and Helping Them Grow

By Carol Ortenberg

At the recent NOSH Live 2018, Jeremiah McElwee, SVP of merchandising and product development at Thrive Market, talked about how his company works with brands to help them flourish.

The Wall Street Journal (paywall)

Kroger's Deal with Ocado Could be a Game-Changer for the Company

By Stephen Wilmot

Kroger has partnered with the UK's Ocado, who has mastered automated fresh food delivery and is beating Amazon in this category.


Danone's VC Arm aims to do 6-7 Deals per Year

By Dominique Vidalon

Danone Manifesto Ventures is planning to have invested in 20-25 food startups by 2020, with a focus on healthy drinks, snacks, baby food and alternative protein sources.

Third Course
Food Navigator

Once Upon a Farm Has Big Plans Beyond HPP Baby Food

By Mary Ellen Shoup

Co-Founder and CEO John Foraker recently spoke at FamilyFarmed's Good Food Financing & Innovation Conference in Chicago and said that his company aims to be a leading kids nutrition brand from baby all the way to age 12.


Organic Guayusa Company Runa Gets Acquired by All Market

By Martin Caballero

Very cool to see that Runa, an organic beverage company started in 2009 by two fellow Brown University alums, Tyler Gage and Dan MacCombie, has been purchased by All Market.

Food Navigator

Plant-Based Foods are Accounting for 20% of All Food Sales

By Mary Ellen Shoup

A recent Nielsen report is showing that plant-based foods are now accounting for 1/5th of all food and beverage purchases, a staggering number and one that should continue to grow.

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This Week's Quick Hits

Quick Hits

* In light of the heartbreaking tragedy taking place at the Mexican border, where kids are being separated from their parents, a few organic food companies are taking a stand.

* John Foraker, Co-Founder and CEO of Once Upon a Farm, wrote this letter on LinkedIn, asking “Where are the CEOs?” and his company is donating $10,000 to the RAICES (Refugee And Immigration Center for Education and Legal Services) Family Reunification and Bond Fund. In addition, Once Upon a Farm is matching funds up to $15,000.

* Ratana Stephens, Co-Founder of Nature’s Path, wrote this letter on Twitter, and her company is donating $5,000 to RAICES. In addition, Nature’s Path is matching employee contributions up to $5,000.

* If you are as upset about this as I am, please consider making a donation. Once Upon a Farm’s GoFundMe page is here, and Nature’s Path is directing donors to the RAICES Bond Fund here.

* Thank you to these two companies for stepping up.

* The Center for Food Safety has released a great research report called Regenerating Paradise: Rebuilding Soil Carbon in Hawaii.

* Make sure to read the U.S. Right to Know’s takedown of GMO advocate Mark Lynas, as he is in the midst of promoting his new book called Seeds of Science. Experts have called Lynas’ claims “false, unscientific, illogical and absurd.”

* The deadline to submit comments about the USDA’s deceptive and misleading GMO-labeling standards is July 3rd. To learn more or to submit a comment, click here.

* Congrats to consumer products sales & marketing agency C.A Fortune for signing a partnership deal with SPINS, which will dramatically boost data-driven insights for its clients.

* Pressed organic juice and meal company Urban Remedy is partnering with model/actress Kate Upton to launch an exclusive meal plan in conjunction with her new wellness platform, Strong4Me Fitness.

* Carrefour in Paris opened up a new Carrefour City store in Paris, which has a significant focus on organic food.

* Boston’s Life Alive Organic Cafe is opening up in Brookline.

* TalkBank, one of the crypto pioneers in Russia’s financial sector, has joined forces with local organic food retailer LavkaLavka to launch the country’s first debit card, which offers cash back paid in cryptocurrency.

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