labeling and packaging

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How do water and salt affect my product labeling?

Water and salt are excluded when calculating the organic percentage of a product. Use our helpful H2.0B Product Formulation worksheet to help you calculate the organic percentage of finished products. This worksheet will also help you if some of your product is not composed entirely of organic ingredients.

I process organic and non-organic products. What additional measures do I need to take?

You must protect organic integrity during receiving, storage, processing, packaging, and transportation. Many certified operations process both organic and non-organic products without any difficulty. These operations are referred to as “mixed” operations. Mixed operations are responsible for protecting organic ingredients and products throughout production. This is done by preventing commingling of organic and nonorganic ingredients and contamination of organic ingredients with prohibited sanitizers, processing aids, and pest control materials.

If I buy certified organic coffee beans from a local certified coffee roaster, how can I label the bulk bins which are used to sell the coffee?

When displaying bulk products that are certified "100% organic" or "organic" food in self-service bins or creating other product displays, you may post signs that provide the same information as listed on the original container or shipping documents. For example, your display, labeling, and display containers may use the USDA “organic” seal and the certifying agent’s mark, logo, or seal.

If I have a new label, do I need to send it to CCOF?

Yes, send all new or revised labels to CCOF for review and approval, even if you think the change does not affect your organic certification. Having your label reviewed by CCOF protects you from making costly mistakes.

If I just want to identify the organic ingredients in my ingredient statement, does the product have to be certified?

No, products that restrict organic claims to the ingredient listing only are exempt from the requirements of certification. However, the manufacturer needs to maintain documentation that the organic ingredients identified are organic and certified according to the regulations. Manufacturers should request and maintain on file current copies of organic certificates for each organic ingredient. Although not required, manufacturers can choose to have products that restrict organic to the ingredient listing certified by CCOF.

Is the Stellar Certification name and logo a valid organic certification seal?

In July 2018, CCOF, Stellar and Demeter announced a partnership to allow organic operations certified by Stellar Certification Services to easily transition their certification to CCOF Certification Services, LLC. On July 31, 2018, Stellar Certification Services ceased to certify organic operations. Stellar is the organic certification sister organization of Demeter USA, the U.S.’ biodynamic certification organization.

We purchase an organic product from a small local producer who is exempt (less than $5,000 sales) from certification. How can we label the product on our shelf tags?

If you buy product from a small-scale organic producer who is exempt from certification, you may identify this product as "organic." But you may not identify this product as being "certified organic" and you may not display the seal, logo, or other identifying mark of a certifying agent; nor may you display the USDA “organic” seal in conjunction with this product.

What is the 'National List' for processed products?

The National List is the list of non-organic materials you are allowed to use as ingredients, additives, or processing aids in your organic products. For processors this includes materials such as yeast, citric acid, baking soda, diatomaceous earth, and others. Only non-organic ingredients and processing aids included on the National List may be used in and on your products. CCOF must approve the use of all ingredients and processing aids prior to use to protect you from inadvertent and costly mistakes. 

What MUST be on my certified organic product label?

Each organic ingredient must be identified as "Organic" on the ingredient statement of products labeled as "Organic," or "Made with Organic (specified ingredients)."

The certifying agent must be identified by name ("California Certified Organic Farmers" or “CCOF”) on the information panel, beneath the name of the handler or distributor, and preceded by the statement, "Certified organic by...", or a similar phrase.

For more details visit our labeling and logos page!

 

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