organic integrity

Dairy Grazing Season Clarification

To all CCOF-certified dairy producers,
 
We appreciate the incredibly hard work and dedication it takes to operate an organic dairy. 
 
Many of you are aware of media reports regarding pasture practices at a dairy in Colorado. We are not aware of any information beyond those reports. However, we are committed to maintaining consumer confidence in organic, and promise to do our part to ensure your hard work is not in vain.

Update on Hydroponic/Container Production

In recent years we have seen an increase in the number and complexity of container-based agricultural production systems. These production systems were addressed by the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) in 2010 in their recommendation regarding Terrestrial Plants in Containers and Enclosures. This recommendation advised a prohibition on hydroponic and aeroponic systems, but was never finalized into official standards. In the interim a wide spectrum of container production has continued to evolve ranging from transplants, to rooftop gardens, to commercial crop production.

NOP Integrity Database

The NOP is launching a new database for certified organic operations’ data, called the Organic INTEGRITY Database. The database provides updated information about all USDA NOP certified organic operations in the hope of deterring fraud, increasing supply chain transparency, and promoting market visibility for organic operations. CCOF worked closely with the NOP to ensure the database would continue to function as a resource for domestic and international buyers, and is continuing to work with the NOP to improve the system.

Alternative Recordkeeping Documentation

CCOF has improved our available sample forms with new online Google templates, found at www.ccof.org/documents. You can also make maintaining documentation easier for yourself by using alternative documentation tools. Recently the National Organic Program (NOP), as part of their Sound and Sensible Certification initiative, has encouraged certifiers and inspectors to recognize alternative documentation, aside from logs or receipts.

Documenting New and Transitioning Parcels

Operations are required to update their Organic System Plan (OSP) regarding changes that can affect their compliance, such as new land managed by the operation. However, many farms implement transition of conventional ground or begin managing new ground without including it in their OSP or inspections.

All transitioning parcels and new ground should be added to your certification as soon as possible to ensure appropriate inspections and verification of practices, and to alleviate the need for costly, last-minute inspections.

CCOF Improves Recordkeeping Tools

Not sure what you should keep for your records? Looking for examples and templates of different record keeping documents? CCOF has a page for recordkeeping support to help answer these questions and provide tools that operations can use to demonstrate compliance. We have templates for equipment cleaning logs, planting stock records, commercial availability search records and more!