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USDA Builds Pandemic Support for Certified Organic and Transitioning Operations

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide pandemic assistance to cover certification and education expenses to agricultural producers who are certified organic or transitioning to organic. USDA will make $20 million available through the new Organic and Transitional Education and Certification Program (OTECP) as part of USDA’s broader Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative, which provides new, broader, and more equitable opportunities for farmers, ranchers, and producers.   

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USDA Expands Assistance to Cover Feed Transportation Costs for Drought-Impacted Ranchers

In response to the severe drought conditions in the West and Great Plains, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced its plans to help cover the cost of transporting feed for livestock that rely on grazing. USDA is updating the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honey Bees and Farm-raised Fish Program (ELAP) to immediately cover feed transportation costs for drought-impacted ranchers.

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Farm Debt Relief for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers Now Available

The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, passed by Congress to help America recover from COVID-19, includes $5 billion in farm debt relief for producers who are members of socially disadvantaged groups that have historically been subject to discrimination and underserved by U.S. government programs. Black/African American , American Indian, Alaskan Native, Latinx, Asian American, and Pacific Islander producers who have farm loans through the Farm Service Agency (FSA) or private lenders with FSA guarantees are eligible for relief.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) CCOF Inspection Policy Update

Effective today, all CCOF organic inspections occurring in the United States are postponed with the exception of those necessary for new certifications with production within 60 days (i.e., new applications, add acreages, new facilities). Inspections for new certifications supports essential business infrastructure for our clients. These inspections may occur under the following conditions:

CCOF Update on Coronavirus (COVID-19) & Organic Inspections

Read the most recent update from March 23, 2020.

We are actively monitoring developments with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and pivoting as needed to support our staff and clients.

Beginning March 16th, most certification staff will work from home. This should not impact your ability to contact CCOF but there may be delays in normal turnaround times as we adjust to this new way of working. In addition, many of our staff are parents and school closures will impact their availability.