In a measure designed to provide a stable price and secure market for its organic feed, Farmer Direct Co-operative Ltd., of Regina, Canada, has joined Organic Valley Family of Farm's Grower Pool. A co-operative of more than 1,400 family farmers in North America, Organic Valley formed its Grower Pool last year to provide stable prices for organic feed producers and to ensure a supply of organic grain for its member farmers.
Farmer Direct Co-operative (FDC) includes 70 certified organic family farms throughout Western Canada. FDC is the largest organic farmer co-operative in western Canada specializing in the marketing of certified organic grains, oilseeds and pulses to food manufacturers in Canada, the United States, European Union and Japan. FDC has been supplying Organic Valley for five years.
This is the first time a co-operative from another nation has joined Organic Valley; FDC's 70 members will represent one vote.
"Strategic partnerships among farmers' co-operatives can only strengthen the co-operative movement," said Luke Zigovits, feed program coordinator for Organic Valley. "Through mutual integrity and cooperation, we help bring stability to family farmers in an always changing and challenging marketplace."
"Farmer Direct Co-op brings a decade of experience in the organic feed business along with 120,000 acres of organic farm land, while Organic Valley brings an internal market of more than 1,400 feed customers. This strategic relationship provides a market for our members' grain while providing Organic Valley farmers with feed security," said Jason Freeman, general manager of FDC.
This initial agreement represents $400,000 in annual feed sales.
About Farmer Direct
Farmer Direct Co-operative Ltd. is a farmer owned business that provides the world with ethically grown and traded food. Its co-operative of 70 certified organic family farms and 120,000 acres of farmland produce high quality, 100 percent certified organic, grains, oilseeds, pulses and meats for food manufacturers, distributors and food service providers in Canada, the United States, European Union and Japan. FDC is a bulk supplier of organic grains specializing in containers, truckloads and railcars.
Organic Valley Family of Farms: Independent and Farmer-Owned
Organic Valley is America’s largest cooperative of organic farmers and is one of the nation’s leading organic brands. Organized in 1988, it represents 1,398 farmers in 33 states and one Canadian province, and achieved $527.8 million in 2008 sales. Focused on its founding mission of saving family farms through organic farming, Organic Valley produces a variety of organic foods, including organic milk, soy, cheese, butter, spreads, creams, eggs, produce and juice, which are sold in supermarkets, natural foods stores and food cooperatives nationwide. The same farmers who produce for Organic Valley also produce a full range of delicious organic meat under the Organic Prairie Family of Farms label. For further information, call 1-888-444-MILK or visit www.organicvalley.coop, www.organicprairie.coop and the cooperative’s farmer website, www.farmers.coop. Organic Valley is also on Twitter @Organic_Valley, and Facebook www.facebook.com/OrganicValley.