Friday, April 14, 2017

Organic Matters Campaign @ New Morning Market

Image result for new morning market

at New Morning Market 
to benefit the Northeast Farming Association of CT (CT NOFA)

For the month of April, New Morning Market in Woodbury is bringing awareness to the health and environment benefits of organic foods and agriculture through its "Organic Matters" campaign to support the work of the Northeast Farming Association of CT (more commonly known as CT NOFA). Donations will be taken at checkout registers all month with organic facts posted throughout the store and an information table stocked with organic literature provided by CT NOFA.
According to New Morning Market's owner John Pittari who has built one of the largest organic produce departments among independent grocery stores in the nation, "I've been a Board member of CT NOFA for years and am very excited to see their growth and how the organization is making a difference for the organic movement in Connecticut. New Morning Market is thrilled to support CT NOFA through an awareness and donation drive throughout the month of April.
CT NOFA welcomes new members to help support their mission to ensure the growth and viability of organic agriculture, organic food, and organic land care.  Their growing membership is comprised of organic enthusiasts, consumers, supporting businesses, land care professionals and farmers around the State who support organic practices and believe in creating an organic Connecticut. In the past year, CT NOFA has been a vocal advocate in helping to pass Connecticut's Pollinator Bill limiting the use of pesticides to protect pollinator insects and wildlife. Farm members are either certified organic or elect to sign CT NOFA's Farmer's Pledge as a commitment to farming and farm management in accordance with sound ecological and economic  principles. CT NOFA is also the only organization in the nation to offer an organic land care professional certification through its Organic Land Care Professional program.
For more information about organics, CT NOFA and membership, please visit

Adventures at the State Capitol with Bill Duesing

More Adventures at the CT Capitol! 

Bill Duesing, CT NOFA Organic Advocate, visited the state capitol again this week on behalf of CT NOFA members. This time it was to participate in a press conference in support of Bill 6998 banning the use of mulch made from used tires on playgrounds at schools and municipal parks. This form of toxic recycling has become almost the standard for playgrounds.
Although this bill seems like a no-brainer, this is the third year that Representative Diana Urban, co-chair of the Committee on Children, has proposed this ban. 

An ongoing Yale study examining crumb rubber found more than 100 different organic compounds in that rubber, including 12 known or possible human carcinogens, approximately 20 skin, eye and lung irritants, and a long list of VOC's, PAHs and heavy metals. Is this what we want our children and grandchildren to be playing on? 

Press conference speakers included several legislators and representatives of Citizens Campaign for the Environment, Connecticut Clean Water Action, the Coalition for a Safe and Healthy CT and the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters. My remarks are attached above. But the star of the show was a ten year old boy from Hamden who spoke with passion and knowledge.TV cameras rolled and reporters asked a few questions.

About an hour later, the Planning and Development Committee held a meeting in the same room to consider bills including number 6998. 

Each bill starts with a legislator or committee. After a public hearing and committee discussion it gets voted on. This playground mulch bill started in the Committee on Children. The ban on roadside herbicide spraying we are working on originated in the Environment Committee.

If a bill is voted out of the first committee it may be sent to another committee, in this case Planning and Development which deals with matters relating to local government. There is a semi-opaque process through which bills are directed to various committees, sometimes because of the issue addressed. At other times a bill is sent to a committee to die. As the June 7 end of this legislative session gets closer, it gets harder to get things done as the bills and issues pile up.
After a brief discussion of the bill, with some committee members expressing strong support and others, strong opposition, the vote was tied at 7 each. The voting was held open until 5 for members who couldn't attend the meeting. The result was a 12 to 10 vote in favor. 

Two of our important partners in environmental work at the Capitol. 
Lori Brown, left, is the executive director of the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters. Her organization monitors and supports a variety of environmental legislation and produces an annual scorecard of legislators' environmental votes. Anne Hulick is the Connecticut director of Clean Water Action and coordinates the Coalition for a Safe and Healthy Connecticut.

For more information, click here!

Like seeing Bill Duesing & CT NOFA working to pass ecologically sound laws in the Hartford capital? We do too! Support CT NOFA's advocacy with an online donation today. Be it $1, $10 or more, your contributions make our organic policy initiatives possible!