King Arthur Flour, Clif Bar, Others Partner to Advance Organic Farming Research
King Arthur Flour and Clif Bar & Company have provided a novel endowment of $1.5 million to advance organic farming research. These funds contributed to the support of The Bread Lab - a multi-disciplinary research center at Washington State University that works with local farmers, chefs, and consumers to breed new organic wheat and barley varieties that are high yielding and offer superior taste and nutritional value.
Stephen Jones, WSU researcher and head of The Bread Lab, stated that the endowment allows for “unrestricted discovery” and the rare ability to direct the lab’s research in freer directions. This endowment is the third such granted by Clif Bar, having previously provided a $500,000 endowment (which was matched by Organic Valley) to the University of Wisconsin, and another $500,000 endowment to the University of California’s inaugural organic research institute.
And although Clif Bar is the leading funder for such research, other companies such as King Arthur and Organic Valley are adding their support as a means to scale up organic farming, which could hopefully overcome barriers to the expansion of organic production in the U.S., such as the lack of high-yielding, high-quality organic seeds.