New York Organic Action Plan Research

After four decades of spreading organic food, farming and gardening, NOFA-NY continues to pursue the vision of healthy communities, where everyone has access to fresh, locally grown food and the resources to produce. That goal has led to the creation of the New York Organic Action Plan (NYOAP), using the National Organic Action Plan as a model.

Read the full background here.

Research and Extension Agenda

Develop a report to NY’s Land Grant and other agricultural schools and research centers on the value of organic research to all farmers, and urge emphasis on improving farmer-researcher interface in order to increase farmer-driven research.

Research topics

  1. Develop system for true cost accounting for food production, quantify externalized costs of chemical, industrial food production and consumption
  2. Study ways to calculate the value of carbon farming, is it better to measure soil carbon or to promote practices that optimize the cycling of carbon?
  3. Calculate the percentage of organic imports to NYS – from other states, from abroad
  4. Study the health benefits of organically grown food and the connections between diet and health
  5. Prioritize technical research that will help organic farmers become better farmers: organic-specific seed variety development, methods of pest and disease control; best practices for organic no-till, best practices for fair, positive and inclusive management
  6. What are the best land management practices and social structures to maximize resilience and sustainability
  7. Study the relation between health and food
  8.  Study the value of healthy school lunches and breakfasts
  9. Research the alternatives to pharmaceuticals – for example, garlic as a fungicide
  10. Calculate the value of farmland and open space as opposed to development
  11. Evaluate how the current system of commodity supports and crop insurance affects food quality
  12. Study innovative land tenure approaches

Extension topics

  1. More workshops on land access
  2. Technical assistance for organic farmers, gardeners and farms in transition to organic. An organic specialist in every county
  3. More workshops and field days on carbon farming using biological rather than chemical approaches
  4. More workshops and field days that have appeal to both organic and conventional farmers