Food Alliance Certification: Market Incentives for IPM
Food Alliance is a non-profit certification program that creates market incentives for adoption of integrated pest management and other sustainable agricultural practices. There are currently 250 Food Alliance certified producers in 17 states managing over 4.1 million acres of range and farmland. Food Alliance has also certified 6 food processors in Oregon and Washington. Farm-gate sales of Food Alliance certified products were estimated at over $100 million in 2005, with participating farmers reporting positive customer feedback, increased customer loyalty, access to new markets, access to contracts and price premiums. Food Alliance certification promotes IPM improvements and specifically prohibits the use of 14 highly toxic pesticide ingredients, including: azinphosmethyl, aldicarb, carbofuran, methyl bromide, phorate, terbufos, disulfoton, methyl parathion, oxamyl, ethyl parathion, fenamiphos, methomyl, ethoprop, and strychnine.
This project will leverage Food Alliance’s growing network of relationships with food processors, packers and distributors to deliver improved IPM and elimination of the high risk pesticides listed above on at least 25 farms representing at least 25,000 acres in Oregon, Washington and Idaho.
Project goals and objectives
Deliver improved IPM and the elimination of targeted pesticides on at least 25 farms representing at least 25,000 acres in Oregon, Washington and Idaho.
Food Alliance recruited and certified 6 new produce handling facilities and 32 new farms raising fruit, vegetable and grain crops on a total of 36,851 acres in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. Eight new ranches managing 183,684 acres were also certified. All farms were evaluated for pest management practices and other concerns addressed under Food Alliance certification, and received feedback on their strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for improvement. Food Alliance documented that that farmers had ceased use of azinphos-methyl, oxamyl, ethoprop, and other prohibited pesticides as a condition for certification of specific crops. Participating farmers also set 1, 3 and 5 year goals for improving pest management and other practices. These included goals for transitioning away from use of prohibited pesticides on other crops in order to qualify them for certification at a future date.