The organic standards adhered to by Azure Farms in Moro, central Oregon are pretty clear: they produce a wide variety of food crops wthout the use of toxic synthetic chemicals.
But now the farm is under threat from a potential Sherman County court order that would subject its fields of wheat, field peas, barley, Einkorn and more to three different toxic herbicides: Milestone, Escort, and Monsanto’s flagship herbicide Roundup.
The farm, which is believed to be the largest independent organic and non-GMO food distributor in the United States, is resisting the court order with everything it has, but if something doesn’t change there’s a very real possibility that its 18-year history of organic farming will be under attack.
Azure Organic Farm Needs Your Help By May 17
According to this Web post from the farm, its home county of Sherman is changing the interpretation of its statutory code from controlling noxious weeds to eradicating noxious weeds. The weeds include hearty varieties like Morning Glory, Canada Thistle, and Whitetop, all of which can only be eliminated in a timely fashion with toxic agrochemicals.
The weeds often remain on Azure’s land but do not prevent them from producing the aforementioned crops as well as its Azure Standard organic beef.
However, the farm would be forced to pay for the expense of the labor and chemicals used if the court order is issued on May 22.
“This will destroy all the efforts Azure Farms has made for years to produce the very cleanest and healthiest food humanly possible,” they write on the website. “About 2,000 organic acres would be impacted; that is about 1.5 times the size of the city center of Philadelphia that is about to be sprayed with noxious, toxic, polluting herbicides.”
The county would then put a lien on the farm to pay for the expenses, putting the burden on the farm to pay for chemicals it does not want or need.
In order to help prevent such a court order from being issued, the farm is calling on supporters of organic food to help.
Those who wish to tell the county to STOP the spraying can contact them in two ways:
1. Via email at [email protected]
2. By calling Lauren with the county at 541-565-3416
The farm is hoping that concerned citizens call the county prior to May 17 preferably, or at the very least before May 22.
“Raise your voice and speak up for you and your families and communities,” they write.
“This proposed action is completely unreasonable and would destroy an organic farm and pollute a massive area. If enough voices that benefit from organic produce speak up, the county will understand that there are people that care about their food NOT containing toxic chemicals. And if the supporters of healthy food can have a louder voice than the supporters of toxic chemicals, every politician will listen. PLEASE take action today and share this message. Overwhelm the Sherman County representatives with your voice.”
You can check out the full post and watch a video by clicking on this link.