USA: Organic Trade Association to move its headquarters
by Redaktion (comments: 0)
The Organic Trade Association (OTA), which has called Greenfield, MA, home since 1990, is celebrating the upcoming move of its headquarters to the Graduate Center building in downtown Brattleboro planned for later this fall. “This move by the Organic Trade Association to Vermont is a testament to the importance of organic agriculture in our state and the leadership and entrepreneurial spirit found here. I have long worked with the Organic Trade Association in Washington on organic policy matters and am delighted it has chosen Vermont as its home base and to bring these jobs to Brattleboro,” said Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy. Leahy, now the second most senior member of the US Senate, often is called the "father of organic" because as chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee he wrote and passed the Organic Foods Production Act as part of the 1990 Farm Bill. In 2009 he was the first recipient of OTA’s Public Servant Award that recognizes individuals in government who have played key roles in organic agriculture and trade policies.
“Marlboro College Graduate Center’s state-of-the-art facility in downtown Brattleboro will provide a nice complement to OTA’s Washington, D.C., office,” said Christine Bushway, OTA’s Executive Director and CEO. She added, “It is exciting to be moving to Vermont, well respected for its interest and support for organic agriculture, sustainability, and green initiatives, particularly at this time when OTA is marking its 25th anniversary, and celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Organic Foods Production Act.” In fact, despite its size, Vermont is among the leaders of organic agriculture in the United States. According to the 2008 Organic Production Survey conducted by the US Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, Vermont ranked tenth of all the states in the amount of organic farms. Meanwhile, its farms’ 2008 organic sales, at nearly 73 million US$, placed Vermont in eighth position in organic sales by state. The Vermont Economic Progress Council has approved up to 86,300 US$ in Vermont Employment Growth Incentives to enable OTA to move its operations, including membership acquisition and retention, public relations, marketing, regulatory review and tracking, support services for legislative activities and administration of USDA and other grants, to Vermont instead of remaining in Massachusetts or consolidating these operations in Washington, D.C.
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