Organic farmers need to know how varieties will perform in their specific farming environment. OSA conducts variety trials to help farmers choose the right varieties for their farms. In addition, researchers use this data to determine breeding priorities. The data is collected through regional and national variety trial networks and is made widely available through a national database.
Not all organic systems are alike. Climate, soil type, and nutrient management vary by farm and region. Through projects such as Carrot Improvement for Organic Agriculture (CIOA) and Northern Organic Vegetable Improvement Collaborative (NOVIC) we are researching how varieties perform in different organic systems. This information will help OSA and other organic plant breeders adapt crops to the organic farms of their intended use.
“OSA is a convener, partner, and leader in creating the alternative -- a regionally based seed system by us and for us. Collaboration in their spinach breeding work has given me hands-on experience through which I've gained both skills and confidence as a seed grower.”
Common Ground Farm