On December 16, 2020, OSA co-hosted a listening session on excluded methods in organic production with National Center for Appropriate Technology and the Society of Organic Seed Professionals.
The conversation focused on methods used in plant breeding and crop improvement in the United States. The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) has been working to provide clarity on excluded methods for the last five years. In 2016, the NOSB passed a policy proposal that provides a framework for evaluating whether a method should be allowed or excluded. Since that time, the NOSB has provided clarity on a dozen methods.
We were lucky to have Jason Cavatorta with EarthWork Seeds Inc. participating in this event. Jason is a plant breeder who is eager for more clarity on which methods should be allowed and which should be excluded in organic production. Jason provided a presentation of a handful of methods still in question, including double haploid technology, induced mutagenesis, protoplast fusion, tilling, and transposons.