Michael Sligh comes from a long-line of West Texas farmers and ranchers and farmed on a large-scale organically for the decade of the 1970’s. He went on to help develop US and International Organic legislation and standards thru his work of over 30 years as a Program Director for Rural Advancement Foundation International - (RAFI-USA). Where he manages policy, research and education for the promotion of organic, agro-biodiversity, organic seed development, and a wide-range of food justice, fair trade and other value-added food labeling, policy and marketing issues.
He is currently involved in two new organic market-based initiatives - Regenerative Organic and New England-based organic farmer effort to address concerns over USDA allowance for hydroponics in organic.
He also helps coordinate the Seeds and Breeds Coalition for the 21st Century, which is reinvigorating public cultivars to meet the challenges of regional climate change and the needs and demands of the organic/ sustainable famers and our marketplace.
He is an author and co-author of numerous publications.
He is a part-time organic farmer and a trained anthropologist. He has been very involved in many aspects of domestic and international agricultural policy and practice development, organizing, food labeling, standards, certification and accreditation work over the years, including:
Founding Chair of the USDA/ National Organic Standards Board,
A founder of Domestic Fair Trade Association, National Organic Coalition, and Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group,
Founding member of National Family Farm Coalition and National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition,
Board President of the International Organic Accreditation Service,
Former NGO delegate to UN Food Labeling Commission and WTO,
Founding partner of Agricultural Justice Project, which has developed domestic fair trade standards for North America.
He lives, farms and works from North Carolina, USA.
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Breakout Room 1
11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Main Stage Hall A