As a farmer, deciding to get an organic farming certification is a smart business move. The demand for organic products has been nothing but high ever since it started becoming readily available on grocery store shelves.
If you’ve purchased organic products yourself, you might have already noticed that organic products can easily go for two or three times as much as regular products, which means that it can be a great profit for any farm.
However, keep in mind that you cannot simply tack on the word “organic” on your products and call it a day. For your products to be marketed as organic, you need to get an organic farming certification. Read on to learn about some of the basics of getting this certification so that you can get started with the certification process.
Check your eligibility
Like it or not, not every farm is eligible for organic certification. However, it is difficult to determine if your farm is eligible for this yourself, so it is highly recommended that you work with an organic certifying agent to help you determine this. Finding the right agent is crucial to the rest of your application process, as, if found eligible, then the right agent can help you with the planning, inspection, and certification of your farm.
Is this something that you can commit to?
Obtaining an organic certification can be very beneficial to your farm, which is why many farmers are considering this route. However, keep in mind that this is not something that you can easily do, which is why it requires a lot of commitment on your part.
Becoming an organic certified farm means having to change up your entire farming process, not just what pesticides to use. For example, organic crops have to be grown in soil that has been tested free from chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and other chemicals for three years, minimum.
As you can see, this process requires a lot of time and resources before you can reap the rewards of this, so make sure that this is something that you can commit to in the long term.
The basics of the certification process
Now that you know what is needed on your end for the organic farming certification process, it’s time to learn what to expect from this. The process starts with the certification application. You will need to choose an organic certifying agent to help you with the application process.
Once they have determined that your farm is eligible for certification, the rest of the process can begin. A site inspection will be scheduled, where the agent will let you know what needs to be changed up in your farm to help you obtain the certification. When you have appropriately complied with all of the needed requirements and paid all of the fees, you are now allowed to label your products with the organic certification label.