Published: February 19, 2024

Category: Organic News

As farmers and rural communities face the effects of increased consolidation, organic dairy cooperative seeks not just more milk but more farmers.

In a year marked by significant challenges for small family farms and rural communities, Organic Valley, the largest cooperative of organic farmers in the nation, is not just seeking more milk but actively welcoming more farmers. The cooperative has brought 84 family farms into its fold in 2023, demonstrating a robust response to the trend of farm loss and agricultural consolidation.

This expansion is not just about numbers; it’s about a growing movement. With plans to welcome more farms in 2024, Organic Valley is set to redefine the landscape of organic farming in America, demonstrating its steadfast commitment to nurturing organic farmers, protecting the environment, and feeding communities with wholesome, organic products.

“This is who we are,” said Shawna Nelson, Organic Valley executive vice president of membership. “Last year, we brought in farms that were abruptly dropped by their milk buyers, and this year, we’ve welcomed 84 more into our organic dairy community. Our commitment to organic family farmers is unwavering, and we aim to be the go-to option for those seeking a stable future in farming.”

The cooperative welcomed 26 organic family farms from Pennsylvania, a dozen more from Wisconsin, 22 in New York, six from Ohio, and several others from Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, and Vermont. By doing so, Organic Valley continues to strengthen its supply chain across multiple regions, bringing an organic market and sense of community to farms nationwide.

Organic & Non-GMO Insights February 2024