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Author: Hannah Smith-Brubaker, Executive Director

After nearly three decades as the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture—or, more commonly, PASA—we thought it might be time for a slight update. Our members voted to approve the update in 2019, and we’re now officially implementing it.

Moving forward, we are Pasa Sustainable Agriculture. Pasa for short.

We know that in the midst of our current reality an organization changing its name is probably one of the last things you care about. We still thought we owed you an explanation as you begin to see our name update reflected in our communications.

So why the change? To start, it’s practical. For a peek into some internal quandaries: We’d often run out of character limits when writing our name in forms. A third of air time for the 15-second public radio ads we placed were devoted to the host merely saying our name. Plus—and this is our favorite—there’s now one less acronym in the world to decipher.

We wanted to be sure to keep “Pasa” in our name to maintain the brand equity our community has lovingly built into it over the past 29 years. And we wanted to keep “Sustainable Agriculture,” of course, to clearly and succinctly express what we’re all about.

We’ve also been reflecting on the fact that our network has steadily expanded over the past several years. Today, a quarter of our members, and increasingly our farmer research collaborators and apprenticeship participants, are living and farming outside of the Commonwealth. The new name is more inclusive to our out-of-state peers.

Though it won’t be in our name, we strongly remain a Pennsylvania-based organization. Our headquarters are in Harrisburg, our work is predominantly conducted here, and we continue to work closely with our many valued partners in the state. And our programs and mission remain the same: building an economically-just, environmentally-regenerative, community-focused food system.

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