On April 5, 2022, the USDA National Organic Program published a final rule to amend the requirements for dairy animals eligible to produce organic milk and milk products. The final rule narrows the allowance for converting non-organic livestock to organic milk production and clarifies how breeder stock must be managed on organic farms.
Please see the attached Final Rule Wording. For the complete federal register, please visit:
OVERVIEW OF FINAL RULE
• Organic milk and milk products must be from animals that have been under continuous organic management from the last third of gestation. There is a one-time exception for operations to transition non-organic dairy animals to organic milk production by managing animals organically for 12-months. The transition must occur over a single 12-month period and all transitioning animals must end the transition at the same time.
• Once an operation uses its one-time transition opportunity, it cannot transition any additional nonorganic animals and cannot source any animals transitioned by other operation. There are additional flexibilities for small businesses (less than $1million in annual receipts) to request a “variance” (special allowance) to source transitioned animals from another operation in limited situations including bankruptcy, insolvency, or inter-generational transfer.
• Breeder stock must be managed organically from the last third of gestation of its offspring through the end of period that the breeder stock is nursing its offspring.
Until April 5th 2023:
- Operations may source transitioned animals (buy, sell, or otherwise transfer) up until April 5, 2023.
Starting on April 5th 2023:
- Operations must be in full compliance with the final rule.
- Operations must not purchase or source any transitioned animals for organic milk production.
NOFA-NY is currently performing on-site inspections; continuing to follow any NYS required safety protocols to protect the health of our inspectors, certified operations, and communities while ensuring compliance with the USDA organic regulations. However, note that on-site inspections could be halted if additional COVID concerns arise or as mandated, and procedures are subject to change. Please review the On-Site Inspection Safety Plan.
Please see the Federal Register for materials removed or renewed to the National List.
This final rule removes the following synthetic substances by March 15, 2023., which are currently allowed in organic crop and livestock production (7 CFR 205.601 and 205.603):
- Vitamin B1 (crop production)
- Procaine (livestock production)
Additionally, AMS is removing the following nonorganic ingredients by March 15,2024, which are currently allowed in organic handling (§§ 205.605 and 205.606):
- Alginic acid
- Colors (black currant juice color, blueberry juice color, carrot juice color, cherry juice color, grape juice color, paprika color, pumpkin juice color, turmeric extract color)
- Konjac flour
- Sweet potato starch
- Turkish bay leaves; and
- Whey protein concentrate.
Finally, this rule renews
- Sucrose octanoate esters for organic crop and livestock production
- Oxytocin for organic livestock production.
Strengthening Organic Enforcement Proposed Rule: Public Comment Period Opens
The USDA National Organic Program’s (NOP) Strengthening Organic Enforcement (SOE) proposed rule was published in the Federal Register on August 5, 2020. Read the proposed rule here.
This proposed rule significantly updates the USDA organic regulations to strengthen oversight and enforcement throughout the organic supply chain. It proposes changes that implement provisions in the 2018 Farm Bill and addresses recommendations from the National Organic Standards Board and the USDA Office of Inspector General.
NOP has published a six-part series that explains the proposed changes in a user-friendly format:
- Part I: Fewer Exemptions
- Part II: Safeguarding the Organic Supply Chain
- Part III: Increasing Oversight Across the Organic Supply Chain
- Part IV: Safeguarding the Organic Supply Chain
- Part V: Increasing Oversight Across Organic Supply Chains
- Part VI: Closing the Gaps
Public review and comment is encouraged! The deadline for public comment: October 5, 2020 at 11:59pm Eastern.
Visit the SOE Web Page for links to the Federal Register announcement and instructions on how to submit comments.
Date: June 22, 2020
To: Organic Producers & Handlers
From: NOFA-NY Certified Organic, LLC
RE: Changes to Equivalency Arrangements and National List
The USDA National Organic Program (NOP) recently announced changes to the U.S.-Canada Equivalency Arrangement, a new U.S.-Taiwan Equivalency Arrangement, and proposed changes to the National List of Allowed Materials.
U.S.-Canada Organic Equivalence Update/Removal of Self-Attestation:
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has revised their import policy for USDA certified organic products traded under the U.S.-Canada Organic Equivalence Arrangement (USCOEA).
As of April 30, 2020, all certified USDA organic products imported to Canada must be accompanied by an organic certificate that includes the following attestation statement: “Certified in accordance with the terms of the U.S. – Canada Organic Equivalency Arrangement.” This means that certifiers must verify compliance to the terms of the U.S.-Canada organic equivalence and include the attestation statement on organic certificates for USDA organic products exported to Canada.
- If you were previously self-attesting, we will be working with you to add the equivalency statement to your organic certificate. This will require verification that supplier certificates show Canadian equivalency as applicable.
- For more information, visit the CFIA website at: https://www.inspection.gc.ca/organic-products/equivalence-arrangements/requirements/eng/1588111274513/1588111275200
New U.S.-Taiwan Organic Equivalence Arrangement:
USDA announced a new U.S.-Taiwan equivalence arrangement, effective May 30, 2020, that streamlines organic trade with Taiwan. The arrangement allows organic products certified in the United States or Taiwan to be sold as organic in either market.
- For more information and terms of the arrangement, visit: https://www.ams.usda.gov/services/organic-certification/international-trade/Taiwan
Proposed Changes to National List:
The USDA published a proposed rule in the Federal Register to amend the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (National List).
This action proposes adding:
- Oxalic acid dihydrate as a pesticide for organic apiculture.
- Pullulan as an ingredient for products labeled, “Made with organic (specified ingredients or food group(s)).”
- Collagen gel casing as a nonorganic ingredient allowed when an organic form is not commercially available.
USDA welcomes comments on the proposed amendments. The 60-day comment period will close on August 7, 2020. You can submit comments here.
If you have any questions or concerns with any of these updates, please do not hesitate to contact our office.