After 40 years, a fringe movement is going mainstream.
But there is work to be done.
The humble beginnings of IFOAM trace back to a meeting in Versailles, France on November 5, 1972. Roland Chevriot of Nature et Progrés invited a number of participants including Lady Eve Balfour, founder of the UK Soil Association, Kjell Arman from the Swedish Biodynamic Association and Jerome Goldstein from the Rodale Institute. The outcome of this get-together was the founding of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM).
Forty years later, IFOAM has evolved into a global association with about 800 affiliates in 120 countries. Once seen as a fringe movement shunning modern day science and subject to criticism from farmers and researchers, many of our pioneering methods are now widely welcomed as a viable and credible alternative to present day industrial farming.
See how far IFOAM and the organic movement have come in “Organic without Boundaries”.
Despite notable achievements and an ever-growing organic sector, financial restrictions pose a constant challenge to our work. Already daunting tasks seem, at times, impossible and resourcefulness has become one of our key survival tools.
But with drive and determination, we have brought the ideas initially articulated in France to the tables of international stakeholders and are now actively working with United Nations organizations such as FAO, IFAD, and UNFCC to name but a few.
Undeterred by financial and indeed other challenges, we remain committed to leading, uniting and assisting the organic movement in its full diversity.
- Letter from Roland Chevriot Announcing the Establishment of IFOAM in 1972
- Memories and Notes on the Beginning and Early History of IFOAM by Mary Langman
- How It All Began by Denis Bourgeois
- A Look at the Development of IFOAM in Its First 25 Years by Bernward Geier
- A list of the past IFOAM General Assembly and World Congresses