(Nov. 19) Cooks who are inspired by health or environmental concerns to use organic ingredients will find like-minded culinary artists at the Patty James Cooking School and Nutrition Center.

The Sebastopol, Calif.-based school in May became the first to be certified as organic by the California Certified Organic Farmers, Santa Cruz.

“Health drives my commitment to organic foods — our own health and the health of this Earth,” Patty James said in an e-mail. “We all need to live today for our great-great-grandchildren.”

The school’s Web site lists a variety of classes, including cooking with organic whole food and vegetables. Fresh produce is the basis for most of her recipes, and her school uses 100% organic products, James said.

“In theory, I am allowed some nonorganic products if organic are not available, which rarely happens for me,” she said.

She said she prefers to source locally because it saves transportation fuel and supports the local economy. The school grows much of its produce on its own land, which is certified organic, James said. She buys other produce from local growers and from a grocery store that offers local produce, she said.