Tampa, FL (PRWEB) September 29, 2004
The Hudson InstituteÂs Center for Global Food Issues (CGFI) Earth Friendly, Farm FriendlyÂ Seal of Approval program has announced the completion of its advisory committee and has started contacting select dairy producers for involvement in the sealÂs pilot program. The committee boasts internationally recognized academic experts, public policy, industry and consumer representatives. ÂThe advisory committees participation is a key aspect of the seal concept - a science-based, credible alternative to some of the other, less rigorous marketing seal programs in existence today,Â stated Alex Avery, Director of Research for CGFI.
Committee members include: Alex Avery, Director of Research, CGFI; Dr. Ken Bailey, Dairy Economist, Pennsylvania State University; Dr. Dale Bauman, Dairy Scientist, Cornell University, Jenn Billings, Consumer Expert; Dr. Bob Collier, Dairy Scientist, University of Arizona; Dr. Pierre Crosson, Soil Scientist; Graydon Forrer, Consumer Expert; Dr. Larry Satter, Dairy Nutritionist, USDA-ARS, U.S. Dairy Forage Research Center; Dr. Dan Towery, Soil Conservationist, Conservation Technology Information Center; and Dr. Henry Tyrrell, Dairy Nutritionist, Retired, USDA/CSREES.
The committee is currently focusing on finalizing the sealÂs management practice standards for participating dairy industry producers. The Earth Friendly, Farm FriendlyÂ program offers a farm and environment friendly seal of approval as an alternative to organic and other production-related niche marketing, the CGFI seal will assure consumers that products bearing the seal are produced in a manner consistent with the best available scientific, health, environmental and quality standards and technologies. Designed in conjunction with independent academic, consumer and farm policy and practice experts, the program will certify farm and process management practices that are verifiable as both farm and environmentally friendly. The certification program is based on the adoption of environmentally sound and economically sustainable practices.
ÂUnlike other certification programs that limit and restrict a farmerÂs choices and significantly increase consumer costs, 'Earth Friendly/Farm Friendly' offers farmers more choices that do not add significant costs for consumers,Â said Alex Avery, Director of research at CGFI. ÂThe program is intended to provide farmers with information and tools to produce more food per acre, leaving more room for nature, using techniques and practices which have been scientifically proven and endorsed by experts.Â
Pilot Producer Sought
The Center for Global Food Issues is planning a pilot project in the dairy industry and is currently soliciting producers, processors and retailers interested in providing their customers with this Earth Friendly/Farm Friendly marketing tool. During the first year of the pilot, CGFI will work with dairy producers, processors, retailers and consumers to formalize standards and create consumer awareness that will provide real value to farmers, consumers and the environment. The advisory panel, comprised of academic experts, public policy, industry and consumer representatives will review feedback at the end of this pilot to ensure the ongoing value and credibility of the seal of approval.
Chris Clark for CGFI
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