Delivering the week’s top organic food news
10.4.2017
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How the USDA Handled the Aurora Organic Dairy Investigation is Very Damaging to the Industry and Consumers


With the USDA announced that it had completed a months-long investigation of Aurora and closed the complaint, saying that the USDA found no "clear and substantive evidence that the existing organic regulations" on grazing were violated.According to The Washington Post, the USDA said it reviewed grazing records from last year but did not share the contents of those records or how they might have shown that Aurora was meeting grazing requirements.Mark Kastel, Co-Director of the Cornucopia Institute, was both disappointed in the USDA’s decision and the transparency in the investigative process. A few days ago, his organization filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to force the USDA to disclose the details about this matter. There is no timetable as to when Cornucopia will receive a response to its FOIA request or if they will get one at all.“The USDA is not enforcing the law and ignored voluminous documentary evidence that Aurora was in violation of organic standards. Consumers of organic milk are being ripped off, and some organic dairy farmers are being forced to switch back to conventional production, or exit the industry altogether, because they can’t compete on a playing field that is not level,” said Kastel.

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