Georgia group promotes booming organic market

Demand for U.S. organically grown products is $6 billion annually and growing at an annual rate of 20 percent. Even so, none of the Southeastern states produce enough organically grown products to satisfy even in-state demands, much less enough for exports.

Deirdre Birmingham says it is time for Southeastern farmers to take advantage of the rapidly growing demand for organic products by getting into the organic commodity production business.

"Many Georgia farmers are growing traditional crops at low margins when they could be participating in the high-margin production or organics. We would like to be a force to help change that. With its long growing season, Georgia could be a major producer of organics," says the recently named executive director of Georgia Organics, formerly known as the Georgia Land Stewardship Association.

Birmingham says the recent name and logo change are intended to project the organization's growth from a small association of organic growers to a larger, more dynamic organization ready to lead an expansion of organic agriculture and gardening in Georgia.

To get the word out on the scope and intentions of the organization, Georgia Organics is sponsoring a number of events. These include a Fall Farm Tour on Sunday, Oct. 15 on farms near Atlanta; an Annual conference, Feb. 9-10, 2001, and workshops for Extension agents and educators in March. Details of these and other information, including membership fees, is available at the website Birmingham can be reached at Georgia Organics Inc., 905 Yukon Drive, Alpharetta, Ga. 30022-5920. Telephone 770-993-5534. Or e-mail [email protected]

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