Aurora Organic Dairy Defends Its Practices

DENVER - A leading private-label supplier of organic milk says it is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to resolve complaints made by a farm policy group.
calendar icon 12 September 2007
clock icon 1 minute read
Kastel alleged he saw 98% of the cattle in feedlots instead of grazing.

The Cornucopia Institute, based in Cornucopia, Wis., filed complaints in 2005 and 2006 about Aurora Organic Dairy, based in Boulder, Colo. The dairy has five farms in Colorado and Texas with more than 5,700 acres of certified organic pasture land.

"We have been working cooperatively with the USDA for 18 months to resolve complaints made by Cornucopia Institute, and we are confident USDA will make a decision on the merits," it said in a written statement.

A phone message left with a USDA representative was not returned Aug. 14. Agency policy is not to comment on open investigations.

Cornucopia Institute co-founder Mark Kastel said the institute gets about a third of its funding from individuals including family farmers, a third from nonprofit foundations and a third from organic businesses. Aurora Organic Dairy is not a donor.

Kastel alleged he saw 98 percent of the dairy's cattle in feedlots instead of grazing on pasture as the law requires. The dairy said Aug. 14 that it tripled pasture acres available to cows in Dublin, Texas, and that lactating cows graze for at least 120 days a year. It said all cows on its newest farms graze for at least 120 days a year.

Source: HighPlainsMidwestJournal
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