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E-M:/ 2 mec members on statewide organic advisory committee

Enviro-Mich message from Dave Dempsey <davemec@voyager.net>

Contact: Denise Yockey
Marketing and Communications Div., 517-373-1104
September 28, 1998

State Agricultural Director Announces Members of
Michigan Organic Foods Advisory Committee

Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) Director Dan Wyant today announced
his appointments to the newly-created Michigan Organic Foods Advisory
Committee. Seventeen members were selected from across the state. The
committee's objective is to develop a statewide strategic plan for the
organic food and agriculture industry.

"We were very pleased at both the caliber and quantity of individuals who
volunteered to develop the plan that will lead Michigan's organic industry
into the 21st century," Wyant said.  "The Organic Foods Advisory Committee
represents a good cross-section of Michigan's organic community, from
producers of organic milk, beef and crops to food processors, a marketing
consultant, a journalist and consumers."

"The U.S. organic food market is expected to more than triple in value in
the next four years, and we hope to position Michigan to be very
competitive in that marketplace," Wyant concluded.

The members of the panel are:
>From Southeast Michigan
- Melinda Curtis of Keego Harbor, an organic consumer and broadcast
- Gregory Hochradel of Milan, an organic grower and marketer;
- L. Ernest Otter III of Livonia, an organic consumer and organic food
processing consultant;
- Peter Murray of Ann Arbor, Director of Operations/Certification at Clean
Clothes, Inc.;
- Michael Potter of Clinton, Chief Executive Officer of Eden Foods, a
premier organic food manufacturer in the U.S.; and
- Carol Osborn of Detroit, organic consumer and member of the East Michigan
Environmental Action Council.

>From Mid-Michigan
-   Robert Fogg of Leslie, an organic cash crop farmer and co-owner of
Fogg's Organic Farm Market in Leslie;
-   Jeff Kourofsky of Okemos, co-owner of Purity Foods, Inc., which markets
organic pasta, flour and other products;
-   Gene Purdum of Williamston, an organic grower and President of the
Lifeline Chapter of the Organic Growers of Michigan; and
- Dan Rossman of Ithaca, who will serve as an ex-officio member, is the
Michigan State University Extension agent from Gratiot County.
>From the Thumb-Area
- Sally Page of Cass City, an organic foods consumer and administrator of
the Thumb Farm Chapter of the Organic Growers of Michigan;
- Shirley Hampshire of Kingston, an organic grower and co-owner of
Hampshire Farms and Bakery; and
- Ed Zimba of Deford, an organic crop grower and milk producer.
>From West Michigan
- Paul Kaiser of Marne, manager of new Harmony Community Farm; and
- Greg Mund of Fremont, an ex-officio member of the committee, is a
District Conservationist with the U.S.D.A. Natural Resource Conservation
>From the Upper Peninsula
- Tim White of Marquette, an organic retail marketing consultant.
>From Southwest Michigan
- Merrill Clark of Cassopolis, an organic beef producer and lifelong
organic activist.

The committee will meet for the first time in Novi in mid-October. Wyant
has requested that they develop a strategic plan for expanded production,
processing and marketing of organic foods in Michigan.  The committee is
also expected to analyze a second draft of proposed federal organic
standards that should be released later this year.  The committee is
expected to complete its work and submit a final report next spring.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture is the official state agency charged
with serving, promoting and protecting the food, agriculture and
agricultural economic interests of the people of the State of Michigan.
(This news release may also be viewed on the World Wide Web at

Dave Dempsey
Policy Director
Michigan Environmental Council
119 Pere Marquette, Suite 2A
Lansing, MI 48912

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