Organic Valley – more than a good brand

Organic Valley 2While attending Bioneers last week, I got to met some of the folks  from Organic Valley Family of Farms, a Bioneers co-sponsor. The “Food and Farming Banquet” they hosted Saturday night featured delicious organic food provided by various local farmers.

Organic Valley’s CEO George Siemon (or CEIEIO as he says) and Theresa Marquez, the Chief Marketing Officer, addressed the hundreds of dinner attendees, speaking about the importance of organic farming and sustainability.

“We need to learn from what we already know,” Siemon said. “We already have the solutions. We just haven’t figured out how to work together!”

Founded in 1988, Organic Valley is a cooperative of 1,333 family-owned organic farms. They stand as an innovative business model, one born out of the necessity of economics.

The organization was founded to help local small organic farmers, to help keep them on the land, farming, at a time when farmers were losing their lands in droves to banks and agri-business.

Organic ValleyWith a reputation of providing top quality food and a commitment to environmental stewardship, their business practices include member-determined pay-prices and equity ownership. But members also receive:

  • production assistance
  • support certification
  • farm planning
  • feed sourcing
  • veterinary consultation

The co-op also has profit-sharing , an innovative model that recognizes members contributions, with:

  • 45% profits to farmers
  • 45% profits to employees
  • 10% profits to community

Known in the industry as a CROPP Cooperative (as in Cooperative Regions of Organic Producer Pools), Organic Valley’s mission is to have a marketing co-op that promotes regional farm diversity and economic stability through organic agricultural methods and the sale of certified organic products.

Their products are all top quality. Now you know that there’s a little bit of heart in them too.

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