As part of the Emergency Relief Program, ERP-2, Flower Hill Institute, in partnership with Farmer Veteran Coalition, is hosting a series of monthly webinars. This month the webinar will be held on Wednesday, September 20, 2023, via zoom and they are going to talk about Organic Certification.
Organic Certification allows a farm or processing facility to sell, label, and represent their products as organic. The organic brand provides consumers with more choices in the marketplace. The USDA protects consumer options by protecting the organic seal. Organic certification verifies that your farm or handling facility complies with the USDA organic regulations. Once you are certified, you can sell, label, and represent your products as organic. These regulations describe the specific standards required for you to use the word “organic” or the USDA organic seal on food, feed, or fiber products.
What can be certified?
The USDA organic regulations recognize four categories of organic products:
- Crops: A plant that is grown to be harvested as food, livestock feed, fiber, or used to add nutrients to the field.
- Livestock: Animals that can be used for food or in the production of food, fiber, or feed.
- Processed products: Items that have been handled and packaged (i.e. chopped carrots) or combined, processed, and packaged (i.e. soup).
- Wild crops: Plants from a growing site that is not cultivated.
Organic agriculture is a fast-growing sector in U.S. agriculture, creating jobs and promoting economic growth and opportunities across rural America. There are more than 28,000 certified organic farms and businesses in the U.S. That number continues to grow as consumer demand for organic grows. In 2019, there was approximately $55 billion in U.S. retail sales of organic products.
The USDA organic regulations describe how the word “organic” or the USDA organic seal can be used on food, feed, or fiber products. These clear regulations create entrepreneurial opportunities for producers and processors that want to capitalize on consumer growth in the organic sector.
Becoming certified organic helps producers and handlers:
- Receive premium prices for their products
- Access fast-growing local, regional, and international markets
- Support local economies
- Access additional funding and technical assistance
- Market products to consumers
See you on Wednesday, September 20, 2023 to learn more about it.
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