Feb 17, 2023
NOP learning center launches new workforce resources

The National Organic Program has launched a new course, Growing the Organic Workforce, in its Organic Integrity Learning Center.

Course topics include experiential organic agriculture programs, organic internship best practices and organic field crop practices. Provided resources aim to support a skilled workforce of organic professionals and promote organic market development, protect organic integrity, and enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion.

The Growing the Organic Workforce resources were developed as part of NOP’s Human Capital Initiative to support current and future generations of organic professionals.

As a partner in USDA’s Organic Human Capital Initiative, Tuskegee University started an experiential program for students at its campus organic farm. NOP program analyst Laura Gallagher (far left) is pictured at the farm with program participants. Photo: Provided

As a partner in the initiative, Tuskegee University started an experiential program at its campus organic farm. Students completed farm tasks while learning about soil science, pest management, horticulture, agribusiness and nutrition.

“It is exhilarating to see the transformation from individuals who had little or no experience in farming to individuals who can hold intelligent discussions on organic farming, operate basic farm equipment such as cultivators and weed eaters, set up and fix leaks in drip irrigation systems, apply organic fertilizers, manage weeds, as well as harvest, grade, and market organic fruits and vegetables,” Franklin Quarcoo, program director, said in a blog post on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s website.

Interested participants can enroll in learning center courses online.

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