LA FARGE, WIS. – Organic Valley announced it is offering 80 small, Northeast organic family farms a market for their dairy. Meanwhile, 10 more such farms already have been offered membership in the cooperative.
The effort to help farms in the region is part of Organic Valley’s yearlong campaign, which it initiated as a response to news in 2021 that Horizon and Maple Hill Creamery would terminate contracts with more than 130 dairy farms in the Northeast.
The 80 families, Organic Valley announced, have time to decide whether they want to pursue the opportunity that was made available through a letter of intent.
The Osgood Family Farm, in Corinth, Vt., is one of the 10 farms to join the cooperative this month.
"My family began farming this land over 65 years ago,” said George Osgood. “I'm glad to partner with Organic Valley to continue our family farm. A cooperative owned by small family farms is the perfect fit for us. It gives us the chance to keep doing what we love."
As reported in the New York Times, many organic dairy farmers in the Northeast have felt pressure recently, as the industry started shifting away from utilizing small farms in New England states.
Organic Valley is the largest farmer-owned organic cooperative in the United States. Founded in 1988 to sustain family farms through organic farming, the cooperative represents approximately 1,700 farmers in 34 US states, Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom.
"We are the only national brand still fighting for small family farms, because we know that the best quality food is ethically sourced from small family farms," said Bob Kirchoff, Organic Valley’s chief executive officer. "With the help of consumers and customers across the country, we are helping solve the crisis of disappearing small family farms. We are creating the food system we all want — one that regenerates soil, cares for animals, nourishes people and strengthens communities."
Organic Valley plans to release more details of its efforts to help small family farms in the Northeast, as well as throughout the US, in the weeks and months ahead.