eOrganic Leadership Team Member Jim Riddle and Joyce Ford Win Sustie Award

Organic Agriculture February 01, 2013|Print

eOrganic Leadership Team member Jim Riddle and Joyce Ford were presented with a Sustie Award at the 33rd Annual EcoFarm Conference at the Asilomar Conference Grounds in Pacific Grove, CA. At each conference, the Ecological Farming Association Board of Directors designates three Sustie Awards to individuals or couples who are long-time Stewards of Sustainable Agriculture.

As organic inspectors for twenty years, 2013 Sustie recipients Jim Riddle and Joyce Ford founded the International Organic Inspectors Association in 1991 and co-authored the International Organic Inspection Manual, Organic System Plan, and inspection report templates. They have improved and expanded organic agriculture through their work in over fifteen countries around the world. In the U.S., Jim saw a need to reduce regulatory barriers on organic farmers, and he advocated for a national organic certification cost share which was established in the 2002 Farm Bill. For the past seven years, Jim has worked for the University of Minnesota as Organic Outreach Coordinator. Joyce served on the Organic Growers and Buyers Association (OGBA) board in the late 1980s. She served two terms on the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Services (MOSES) board; co-authored OTA's Good Organic Retailing Practices (GORP) training manual; was a site monitor for pipelines crossing organic farms in Minnesota; and established a training program for this unique occupation. She currently does work for the International Organic Accreditation Service (IOAS).

In addition, Jim and Joyce were organic produce growers for many years and helped organize the thriving Winona, MN, Farmers Market in the 1980s. Jim served on the Land Stewardship Project's original Steering Committee, and on the MN Department of Agriculture's Organic Advisory Task Force from 1991-2009. He currently serves on the MN Ag Water Quality Certification Program Advisory Committee and is chair of the Winona County Soil and Water Conservation District Board. Jim was on the USDA National Organic Standards Board from 2001-2006, including terms as secretary, vice-chair and chair, and he served as a member of the U.S. delegation to Codex, helping establish the Codex International Organic Guidelines. He has served 5 years on the Leadership Team of eOrganic, the National eXtension Community of Practice for Organic Agriculture. For the last 4 years, Jim and Joyce have established and operated a perennial fruit operation, Blue Fruit Farm, in SE MN.
Additional recipients of the 2013 Sustie Award are Steve Sprinkle and Olivia Chase, and Mark Squire. Find the EcoFarm Press Release here.