Wisconsin looks to Farm Bill to address fake organic imports
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin organic food producers are hoping the Farm Bill Congress is considering will include a provision to crack down on fake imports.
Legislation the U.S. Senate approved last week would require the Department of Agriculture to keep better track of organic products by requiring electronic import certificates.
Wisconsin Public Radio the bill would also provide funding to modernize USDA's data collection process. An audit last year concluded the agency is not doing enough to make sure imports meet organic standards.
The Wisconsin-based Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service says USDA's current procedures were developed before organic products became a global industry. The group's executive director, John Mesko, says U.S. farmers have lost hundreds of millions of dollars because of fake imports of organic grain.
The proposal still needs approval from the House.