The influence of the U.S. consumer market on federal legislation pertaining to organic agriculture will be examined in the final installment of Lawrence University’s four-part environmental studies lecture series on sustainable agriculture.
Amy Kremen, a former assistant at the U.S.Department of Agriculture’s Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program, presents “Federal Legislation on Organic Farming and Food Labeling” Thursday, Feb. 24 at 4:45 p.m. in Science Hall, Room 102 on the Lawrence campus. The event is free and open to the public.
The address will provide a historic look at organic farming legislation at the federal level and the affects of that legislation in light of the October, 2002 transition to federal oversight of state and private organic certification of farms and food processors.
Kremen will share the results of a recent national survey of farmer’s market managers about the participation and eco-labeling strategies by, and consumer appreciation of, organic farmers at their markets. She also will discuss the meaningfulness of the organic label as compared to other marketing terms such as “natural,” which have become widespread in recent years.
A former chef at an organic foods restaurant and one-time manager of a farmer’s market herself, Kremen has worked as an assistant for the USDA’s Economic Research Service, tracking adoption of U.S. organic farming systems by crop and state. She is currently pursuing a graduate degree in soil science at the University of Maryland, where her research is focused on nitrogen release from Brassica cover crops.
The sustainable agriculture lecture series is sponsored by the Spoerl Lectureship in Science in Society. Established in 1999 by Milwaukee-Downer College graduate Barbara Gray Spoerl, and her husband, Edward, the lectureship promotes interest and discussion on the role of science and technology in societies worldwide.