How to be Certified
- Go to the Organic Program Forms page
- Fill out the Application Form
- Pay the annual application fee
- Complete or update your Organic System Plan
- The Organic Program reviews submitted forms
- Notice of Inspection is sent
- Inspections are scheduled annually by the inspector
- On-site inspection
- Pay inspection fee
- Final review of inspection report and documents
- Notice of Certification and Organic Certificate sent
- New applicants can apply at any time.
- Producers: Submit application and updates and all fees by March 15.
- Handlers: Submit application and updates and all fees by September 15.
- Submissions must be received by those dates to avoid incurring a late fee. Allow 5-7 days for mailing.
If you want to transition to Organic Certification
Ten Steps to Transition Checklist: Written for prospective producers, this checklist outlines 10 steps for transitioning to organic certification. This easy-to-scan handout, in both English and Spanish, introduces new farmers to the certification process. Materials also include sample documents for organizations that want to host their own "Certification Made Simple" Workshops. Produced by USDA AMS with the California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF).
- Seed Labels and Purchase Invoices or Receipts
- Seed Search Documentation (at least 3)
- Material Labels for those that are Used – Inoculants, Weed and Pest Control, Soil Amendments, Fertilizers, etc.
- Livestock Feed and Supplements Labels and Purchase Invoices/Receipts (if applicable)
- Livestock Feeding Records (if applicable)
- Pasture Management Records (if applicable)
- Field Activity Records/Field History Records
- Planting & Harvest Dates
- Crop Storage Records/Bins
- Sales Invoices, Bills of Lading, Scale Tickets
- Crop & Acreage Plan (available on the Forms page) (New & Renewal)
- Detailed Maps size 8 ½ x 11 Google Color Preferred
- Photos as Applicable for Verification
- Receiving Documents for All Ingredients (purchase orders, purchase invoices, freight bill of lading, scale tickets)
- Production Records
- Recipes or Current Product Profiles (available on the Forms page)
- Current Organic Certificates from Ingredient Suppliers
- Equipment Clean-out and Purge Logs
- Sales Invoices & Bills of Lading
- Material Invoices (Cleaning, Packaging Materials etc.)
- Ingredient and Final Product Inventory Reports
- Shrink Log
- Pest Control Log and Labels for Materials used for Pest Control
- Detailed Sales by Item Reports for Organic Products (available on the Forms page)