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Organic at Expo East

Visit OTA & The Organic Center
Booth #1211
Schedule Meetings at OTA's
Member Lounge
Attend The
All Things Organic
Conference Sessions
Kick off Expo East at
OTA's Annual Leadership Awards Celebration
Meet the OTA Board at the
Annual Membership Meeting


September 10-14, 2019

Baltimore, MD


Tuesday, September 10, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  |  Hilton Key Ballroom 6

The Organic Center is collaborating with the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) on a convening to bring together farmers, researchers, policymakers, industry members, and non-profits to investigate the current landscape of tools available for farmers and build a scaffolding for prioritizing research projects to address the top needs of the community. The convening will identify high-impact research areas that could have a substantial positive impact on advancing organic, build partnerships in support of scientific collaborations, and provide a venue for cross-sector sharing of ideas and priorities.


Wednesday, September 11, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.  |  Hilton Tubman Room 

The Organic Trade Assocation (OTA) welcomed members to attend and observe its Board meetings with the exception of any Executive Session. 


Wednesday, September 11, 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.  |  Hilton Key Ballroom 6

Join The Organic Center for our annual Organic Confluences Conference, addressing issues at the intersection of research and policy for the organic community. This year's conference will focus on mitigating and adapting to climate change.This conference brings together farmers, scientists, extension agents, industry members and key policy influencers to address large-scale challenges that the organic sector is facing. This year’s Organic Confluences Conference will explore how organic can both adapt to our changing climate and be a force for climate change mitigation. Click here for the full Confluences Conference agenda! 


Wednesday, September 11, 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m  |  Belvedere Hotel 

The Organic Trade Association will host its Annual Meeting for members immediately preceding the Annual Leadership Awards Celebration the evening of Wednesday, Sept. 11, in Baltimore. The meeting will take place from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Belvedere Hotel. Plan to join the Organic Trade Association for discussions about our Bold Steps and hear directly from Board members


Wednesday, September 11, 6:30 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. | Belvedere Hotel 

Organic Trade Association's 2019 Leadership Awards Celebration is THE kick-off event for Natural Products Expo East in Baltimore. We'll celebrate three trailblazers who've led the way for organic agriculture and trade. This event is always a great opportunity to reconnect with friends and colleagues, enjoy a delicious organic meal, and then end the evening on a sweet note--relaxing and networking in our dessert lounge. Learn more and register now!


Wednesday, September 11 - Thursday, September 12 | Baltimore Convention Center, Room 301-303

The Organic Trade Association and Food Export-Northeast's Joint Buyers' Mission allows U.S. suppliers to meet one-on-one with up to ten international buyers. Meetings are about 25 minutes long and pre-arranged by Organic Trade Association staff. For more information, contact Alexis Carey


Thursday, September 12 - Friday, September 13 | Hilton Key Ballroom 5 & 6

As the leading authority on the North American organic market, the Organic Trade Association delivers a one-of-a-kind conference program with critical information on the issues that impact your organic business. The conference line-up will hit all the hot topics of the day and is sure to spark conversation. Click here for the full conference agenda!


Organic stakeholders are committing their dollars, their vision, and their determination to a major collective effort to advance organic through research, promotion, and education. Join the Organic Trade Association, and our co-collaborators, for updates, insights, and new ways to get involved in these powerful GRO Organic projects during Natural Products Expo East 2019.

Thursday, September 12 | Hilton Key Ballroom 7/8

The State of Natural & Organic: Leading Perspectives on a Growing Industry | 8:45 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
This high-impact keynote panel will explore the top macro forces and trends fueling growth and shaping the future of the organic industry. Organic Trade Association CEO and Executive Director, Laura Batcha, will share insights from the innovative GRO Organic prototype projects. From a deep dive into the thinking of organic consumers to in-field training for agronomists and technical advisors, from a national promotion campaign to distinct research projects on how organic can help mitigate climate change, you’ll learn how organic innovators are shaping the future and what you can do to join the collective effort. 

Friday, September 13 | Hilton Key Ballroom 3 

GRO Organic Consumer Messaging Workshop | 9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. (Core Committee Only)
The GRO Organic Consumer Messaging Core Committee will come together to advance work on a research driven toolkit to help the industry speak with a unified voice, using the messages most compelling to our shoppers. While this workshop is open only to Core Committee members, everyone is invited to attend the GRO Organic Consumer Research Insights and Promotion Plans session that follows at 11:00 a.m. 

GRO Organic Consumer Research & Organic Voices Presentation | 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. 
A major research project is uncovering what drives a consumer to choose organic, what messages penetrate deeper than others, and what attributes of organic are the most valued by today’s diverse customers. Come for an insider’s look at the topline research results and learn more about the messaging toolkit underway. Stay for an Organic Voices presentation on how those insights will be put into action through a national campaign that creatively illuminates the enormous numbers of chemicals prohibited in organic food, personal care and textile production. Both of these significant pieces of work will provide tangible takeaways for organic stakeholders to strengthen their connection with consumers. It’s not too late to get involved!

GRO Organic Technical Assistance Workshop | 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. 
American farmers need help meeting the growing demand for organic and the Organic Agronomy Training Service (OATS) train-the-trainer program is offering that critical support. Agronomists, farmers, and other service providers interested in the art and science of organic crop production are rallying to support growers with access to technical assistance through transition to organic and beyond. Learn about the 2019 trainings in the Midwest that focused on row crops and the plans for 2020 to expand the production, certification and training resources for different production systems and geographic regions.


Thursday, September 12 - Friday, September 13 | Hilton Key Ballroom 3 & 4

Reforming the Public Private Partnership: Continuous Improvement in Organic Workshop
Thursday, September 12 | 10:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. | Hilton Key Ballroom 4 | Open to the public

A healthy market for organic requires critical support from the USDA National Organic Program for uniform and robust standards. However, in the past 10 years, industry has advanced 20 consensus recommendations for improvements to the organic standards via the National Organic Standards Board and the USDA has not completed rulemaking on a single one of them. Attendees will participate in a facilitated discussion on the future of the public-private partnership focusing on long-term solutions to ensure continuous improvement and accountability of the organic standards. 

Joint E.U. / Mexico / International Trade Task Force Meeting
Thursday, September 12 | 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. | Hilton Key Ballroom 4 | Task Force Members Only

Sugar Supply Task Force Meeting
Thursday, September 12 | 3:15 p.m. – 4:45 p.m. | Hilton Key Ballroom 4 | Task Force Members Only

Retail Sector Council Meeting
Friday, September 13 | 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. | Hilton Key Ballroom 3 | Council Members Only

If you are not a Task Force or Council member but would like to attend one of these meetings, contact Ben Knuth


Friday, September 13 | Hilton Key Ballroom 10

The Future of Organic: Relevance & Scalability | 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Organic is the global market standard-bearer for healthy and sustainable food. Demand for organic is exceeding supply. Consumers are increasingly aware of the connection between health, ecological sustainability, and how food is produced – and are demanding better quality and better information in order to make informed choices. From microbiome to macroeconomics, this session identifies key trends and needs for the organic sector as it enters accelerated growth and evolution. Leaders share crucial, contrasting, and complementary perspectives. Audience Q&A is encouraged.

Laura Batcha, Organic Trade Association's CEO/Executive Director, will be speaking in this session alongside four other panelists. The key learning objectives of this session include: 

1. Gain insight into key strategic approaches to crucial supply-and-demand challenges facing the growth of the organic market.
2. Understand the latest trends in consumer preferences and how they are affecting the way products are marketed.
3. Identify cutting edge technologies, innovations, and research areas that will shape the future of organic and sustainable production and consumption.


Thursday, September 12 - Saturday, September 14   |  Booth #1211  |  Baltimore Convention Center

Members can stop by our lounge anytime during show floor hours to grab a cup of organic coffee, check email, and chat with staff. Meeting space is always available on a first come first served basis.


Adrienne Messe
Integrated Events & Marketing Project Manager
(202) 403-8634