Sign up for the
Weekly Harvest Newsletter!

Published every Wednesday, the Weekly Harvest e-newsletter is a free Web digest of sustainable agriculture news, resources, events and funding opportunities gleaned from the Internet. See past issues of the Weekly Harvest.
Sign up here

Sign up for the Weekly Harvest Newsletter

What Is Sustainable Agriculture?

Master Publication List

Search Our Databases

Urban Agriculture

Energy Alternatives

Beginning Farmer

Field Crops

Crop Insurance

Horticultural Crops

Livestock & Pasture

Value-Added Food Products

Local Food Systems

Food Safety

Marketing, Business & Risk Management

Organic Farming

Pest Management

Soils & Compost

Water Management

Ecological Fisheries and Ocean Farming

Other Resources

Sign Up for The Dirt E-News

Home Page

Contribute to NCAT


Newsletter sign up button

· Privacy Policy · Newsletter Archives

RSS Icon XML Feeds

RSS 2.0: Events, Breaking News, Funding Opportunities Atom: Events, Breaking News, Funding Opportunities


NCAT strives to make our information available to everyone who needs it. If you are a limited-access or low-income farmer and find that one of our publications is just not in your budget, please call 800-346-9140.


How are we doing?


Home  >  Organic Farming  >   Organic Certification of Farms and Businesses Producing Agricultural Products (Summary)

Organic Certification of Farms and Businesses Producing Agricultural Products


Digital Price:


Print Price:


By Ann Baier, NCAT, and Lisa Ahramjian, NOP

Published: 2002

Updated: November 2012



8 pages

Download PDF


Add Print Copy to Cart


This publication provides an overview of USDA organic certification and provides some additional resources for prospective organic farms and businesses.

Table of Contents

What is organic?
What is organic certification?
Who needs to be certified?
What types of products are eligible for organic certification?
Why is certif ication required?
How do I pick a certifying agent?
Is there a transition period?
How much does organic certification cost?
How often does my certification need to be renewed?
How are the certifying agent and inspector related?
What does the inspector typically look for?
What happens if an operation violates the USDA Organic Regulations?
Can I use the USDA organic seal?
What about other labeling claims?
Once certified, can I export USDA organic products to another country?

Note: Digital downloads are in full color. Printed, mailed copies are only available in black & white.


Back to top

This page was last updated on: January 29, 2018