Web site for organic livestock

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Livestock producers who find organic production an entirely different animal than what they're used to can now turn to a Purdue University resource for help.

The Organic and Alternative Livestock Production Systems Web site provides a wealth of management and production tips for transitioning into the growing industry segment. Consumers also can learn more about organic products and where to purchase them in Indiana.

The Web site is located at www.ansc.purdue.edu/poa/

Visitors can download fact sheets, Extension publications, PowerPoint presentations and videos through the site's YouTube channel PurdueOrganic. The Web site also has a weblog that provides daily news from around the world on organic and alternative livestock production.

The USDA defines organic livestock as animals that have consumed feed or grass grown without certain fertilizers and chemical applications, given access to the outdoors and not treated with antibiotics or growth hormones. Food products carrying a USDA organic label can consist of between 70% and 100% organically produced ingredients, and are labelled as such.

Indiana is home to 287 farms with land in organic production, according to the USDA's 2007 Census of Agriculture. Indiana farms sold nearly $8.7 million worth of organically produced commodities in 2007, at an average of $36,346 per farm.

The ag census reported 20,437 farms with organic production in the United States, with total sales of $1.7 billion.