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A Look Ahead

Montana Organic Association's 10th Annual Conference

Reviewing the Decade and Planning for the Millennium

By: Montana Organic Association
for Mountain West News
Nov. 26, 2012

The Montana Organic Association is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a conference to remember that begins Nov. 29 and runs through Dec. 1 in Helena.

The conference, which will be held at the Holiday Inn at 22 North Last Chance Gulch in Helena, begins with a preconference event on Thursday evening at 7 o'clock with a social hour, followed at 8 p.m. with a screening of the documentary In Organic We Trust, "which explores the content beneath the label and the truth behind the marketing."

On Friday, registration will begin at 8 a.m. along with a complimentary breakfast.

  • Jeff Moyer, Farm Manager at the Rodale Institute;
  • Gary Zimmer, world renown consultant on farming practices; and
  • Atina Diffley, organic educator and speaker.

One of the Montana Organic Association's strongest advocates, Ron De Yong, Director of the Montana Department of Agriculture, will be our speaker at lunch.

The sessions on Friday afternoon will focus on the nuts and bolts of what it takes to stay competitive in today's markets.

Friday will end with great fun and organic food, keynote speaker, Jeff Moyer and our world famous auctions.

Saturday's session begins  bright and early with a panel that gives us the inside scoop on being an inspector, including:

  • Margaret Scoles, IOIA;
  • Sean Mulla, Montana Department of Agriculture;
  • Wendy Paulsen, Independent Inspector, Wisconsin; and
  • Jack Reams, Global Organic Alliance

After that, the Organic Trade Association will make a presentation on its push to create a check-off program for organics.

A members meeting will be held during lunch on Saturday, with an update on how the organization is doing and a board election will be held.

Saturday afternoon there will be sessions on Bees and Other Pollinators, Marketing Organic Products and Soil Balancing from Gardens to Grain Fields.

Conference Agenda

Conference Registration & Hotel

If you’d like more information or would like to volunteer, call Lou Ann Crowley at (406) 721-4331 or email her here.

If you’d like more information or would like to sign up as a vendor, advertiser or sponsor, call Daryl Lassila at (406) 788-7423 or email him here.

SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE: If financial limitations may keep you from attending
the conference, a limited number of scholarships are available. Please contact Wes Henthorne at (406) 932- 4197 or email to explore scholarship or work/trade opportunities.

SEED SWAP: Bring your home grown vegetable, grain, and herb seeds to share at the MOA Conference.

MOA's mission is to advocate and promote organic agriculture for the highest good of the people, the environment and the state's economy. MOA works pro-actively to:
  • promote a robust National Organic Program that strengthens family farms through meaningful and coherent regulations

  • educate consumers (and others) about organic standards to help them make informed food choices

  • aid farmers making the transition to certified organic production

  • provide networking opportunities

  • support organic research to help farmers continue to meet organic
    production challenges

  • work collaboratively with other organizations to achieve MOA's mission

"W e have just not received proposals. It’s tough to get Idaho producers excited about prevention."

Jon Beals, project manager with the Idaho Governor’s Office of Species Conservation, discussing why the state has paid out just $12,000 of the $108,152 it received in 2013 and 2014 from the federal Wolf Livestock Demonstration Project Grant Program, which helps pay for nonlethal means to keep wolves away from livestock.
- Idaho Mountain Express (Sun Valley)

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