USDA Announces Details for $300M to Reduce Reliance on Toxic Pesticides, Expand Organic Farming

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced promising details on its $300 million Organic Transition Initiative, a comprehensive program to support farmers and ranchers transitioning to organic agriculture.

The Initiative has three elements: 

  • $100 million in wraparound technical assistance, facilitated by major organic partners in six regions
  • $100 million for targeted supply chain development
  • $100 million for conservation assistance and crop insurance subsidies that will help cover the risks and costs of the challenging three-year transition period required for organic certification

The following is a reaction from Allison Johnson, senior attorney at NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council): 

“USDA’s $300 million investment in the future of organic agriculture will expand opportunities for climate-friendly farming that we urgently need. Organic agriculture protects the long-term health of the food and farming system by building healthy soil, protecting ecosystems, empowering communities, and reducing our reliance on harmful pesticides and fertilizers. We need more investments like this in the upcoming Farm Bill.” 

Additional Resources: 

NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Bozeman, MT, and Beijing. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter @NRDC.

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