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From Democracy in Action: "On December 5, 2006, the USDA announced its new appointments to the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB). The NOSB essentially advises the USDA on how to interpret and implement federal organic laws that regulate industry. The NOSB also reviews and approves substances for placement on the National List of Approved and Prohibited Substances. In other words, the NOSB has the ability to significantly weaken or strengthen the effectiveness of the national organic standards". "According to federal law, the NOSB is to be made up of a diverse group of experts in the organic field, including a consumer and public interest group representative, an environmentalist, a scientist, and a handler. Despite this clear mandate of diversity, the USDA's new appointments are all industry representatives"."

USDA's new appointees are:

Scientist: Katrina Heinze (General Mills)

Consumer and Public Interest Group Representative: Tracy Miedema (Stahlbush Farms: a primarily non-organic operation)

Environmentalist: Tina Ellor (Phillips Mushroom Farms)

Handler: Steve DeMuri (Campbells Soup)

"

Image credit: Think Geek

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