Dear Democracy Now! Visitor: We are an independent, ad-free daily news program that serves millions of viewers and listeners each month. In this US election year, Democracy Now! is more important than ever. For 20 years, we’ve put a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power. We lift up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We do all of this with just a fraction of the budget and staff of a commercial news show. We do it without ads, corporate sponsorship or government funding. How is this possible? Only with your support. A generous funder will match your donation dollar for dollar if you donate right now. That means when you give $10, your donation will be worth $20. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you every day.

Your Donation: $

Agriculture Department Solicits Comments On Organinic Food Regulations

March 12, 1998

This past December, Secretary of Agriculture Dan Glickman announced a proposed a new national set of standards for the burgeoning organic food industry. Simply put, the new rules aim to set a uniform national standard about what is and what is not organic.

The proposed new rules have generated a storm of controversy and the U.S Department of Agriculture has been flooded with thousands of comments on the proposed rule.

One area that has generated the most attention has been the proposal to allow the use of genetically engineered organisms, irradiation, or bio-solids. The Agriculture Department says the proposal simply asks for comment on whether they should be included or not under the organic standards.

The comment period on the new rules will close April 30, 1998.


  • Katherine DiMatteo, the executive director of the Organic Trade Association, a business group representing the organic industry in the United States and Canada. Its over 600 members include growers, processors, retailers, and others involved in the business of producing and selling certified organic products. The OTA also represents large-scale organic farms: Strauss, Lomburgh and Horizon Farms. She joins us from Southern California. For more information call, (413) 774-7511.
  • Tom O’Brian, Associate Administrator at the United States Department of Agriculture. He joins us from our studios in Washington, D.C.
  • Alan Goldhammer, the executive director for technical affairs of the Biotechnology Industry Organization, a trade group based in Washington, D.C.

Related links:

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.