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More Organic Farms Powered by Consumers

A new startup, Fquare, aims to give consumers what they want, more organic, non-GMO foods. Fquare allows members to sponsor farms to go organic nationwide.

New York, NY, January 28, 2014 --( An increasing amount of American consumers are against GMO foods. In 2013, the Mellman Group ran a poll for the group, Just Label It, where 91% of the 1000 voters surveyed said they wanted GMO labeling, which was interpreted as "consumers have a right to know what's in their food." Recently, General Mills, the producer of Cheerios, announced it would be selling non-GMO Cheerios to consumers, giving voice to the increasing demand for foods without GMO.

But the truth on the ground is that organic farmers cannot feed the growing demand alone. Today, less than 1% of U.S. farms are certified USDA organic. Making it difficult for food manufacturers to follow in General Mills footsteps.

A recent article written for Forbes Titled: Are GMO-Free Cheerios the First Domino?, stated that 90 percent of Americans believe that GMOs are unsafe, 93 percent of Americans favor stringent federal GMO labeling regulations, and 57 percent say they would be less likely to purchase products labeled as genetically modified.

The top 10 GMOs opposition groups (such as Green America and Food Democracy Now) boast more than one million Twitter followers, two million Facebook likes, and 77,000 YouTube subscribers.

One thing is clear, the demand from consumers. Many GMOs opposition groups have focused on Monsanto and the government, but farmers, the ones that plant the "seeds," are sticking with the status quo. One would think with so much high demand, why aren't more farmers going organic? There are many reasons, but the bottom line is they are not, at least not now.

Fquare, a new startup has an answer. Fquare has shifted its focus from conventional farmland to a more sustainable model to help bring more organic foods to market. The solution; bring the consumer back to the farm. For decades, consumers have been removed from the farm, but Fquare now thinks in order to save the farm it needs to bring them back, how?

On Tuesday, Fquare opened up its platform to the public. Fquare allows them to sponsor farms that grow conventional crops to go organic. Here's how the platform works, Fquare selects a conventional farm for sale, members can sponsor the farm to go organic. Once enough pledges are raised, Fquare purchases the farm and hands it over to local organic farmers that will start farming the land without the use of toxic persistent pesticides, artificial hormones, and antibiotics for 3 years as required by the USDA to get the certification as a USDA Certified Organic Farm. Sponsors are able to track the farm's 3 year trajectory from conventional to organic.

The idea is simple; the more organic farms more organic foods available to consumers. The more organic farms the more land organic farmers have to grow their crops.

Fquare is running its pilot in beta, hoping to have the support of GMOs opposition groups and their followers and organic consumers.
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Fquare Inc
Charles Polanco

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