Cornucopia Institute

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The Cornucopia Institute is a national food and farm policy watchdog group working to uphold the integrity of organic, local, and other forms of alternative agriculture. The 501(c)(3) non-profit organization is headquartered in Cornucopia, Wisconsin.

Cornucopia has exposed factory-farming conditions at organic egg production facilities confining tens of thousands of hens per building with inadequate outdoor access,[1] and at organic dairies, where thousands of cows have no access to pasture in concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFO).[2] Their ongoing “flyover project” has resulted in high-resolution aerial photography of unethical organic livestock facilities across the country.[2]

Cornucopia has produced reports and consumer scorecards that rate organic and natural brands of eggs,[3] pet food,[4] yogurt,[5] soy foods,[6] and breakfast cereals.[7] They have also reported on the food additives carrageenan[8] and DHA[9].[10] In addition, Cornucopia has released white papers and reports covering current issues in organics such as a Hydroponics White Paper (2015), a Children’s Health Report (2015),[11] and an Organic Watergate White Paper (2011).[12]

The Cornucopia Institute also takes legal action on organic integrity issues, for instance having filed complaint against Dean Foods (White Wave), based on the use of the term organic.[13] It challenged a USDA marketing order related to almonds, and has filed complaints with the USDA about certain practices of Aurora Organic Dairy, Horizon Organic, Silk, and others, as they relate to organic standards and regulations. In 2016, Cornucopia filed suit against the USDA alleging that agribusiness personnel were improperly appointed to seats reserved for organic farmers on the National Organic Standards Board.[14]


  1. ^ "Millions of 'organic' eggs come from industrial scale chicken operations, group says". Washington Post. Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  2. ^ a b "USDA declines to investigate alleged violations at major organic farms". Washington Post. Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  3. ^ Strom, Stephanie (2015-11-23). "Putting the Chicken Before the Egg". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  4. ^ "The Truth About Pet Food". EcoWatch. 2015-12-18. Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  5. ^ "Group blasts most yogurt as "junk food"". Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  6. ^ "Which Veggie Burgers Were Made With a Neurotoxin?". Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  7. ^ Nestle, Marion. "Keeping Up With Sugary Cereal News: Still Not a Good Choice". Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  8. ^ "Doubts surface about carrageenan, a common food additive". Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  9. ^ "Questions and Answers About DHA/ARA and Infant Formula" (PDF). Cornucopia Institute. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
  10. ^ Molloy, Aimee. "What Does 'Organic' Mean for Baby Formula?". Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  11. ^ Institute, MARK A. KASTEL | co-director, Cornucopia. "Mark A. Kastel: Studies suggest organic food right choice for children's health". Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  12. ^ Sietsema, Robert (2012-05-18). "Is Your Definition of Organic the Same as the USDA's? Cornucopia Institute Declares an Organic Watergate". Retrieved 2016-06-27.
  13. ^ The Village Voice (Dec. 14 2009)
  14. ^ "Cornucopia Institute files suit against USDA". Retrieved 2016-06-27.

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