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Organic Certification

Certification is defined as a system by which the conformity of products, services, practices, etc. to applicable standards is determined and confirmed. This confirmation can be done either by:

  • The first party - the supplier
  • The second party - the customer, or
  • The third party - an independent body

Certification is the procedure by which an independent third party gives written assurance that a clearly identified production or processing system or methodically assessed and conforms to specified requirements/ standards.

Certification of organic agriculture combines certification of products and quality systems, but it is primarily certification of a production system or method. All operation in the product chain, including farmers, processors and distributors, must be certified as acting in conformity with the standards and regulations of the certification program.

Certification is one way of ensuring that products claimed to be organic are actually produced according to organic farming principles. It is a way of protecting consumers, producers, and traders against the use of misleading or deceptive labels. It is also a marketing instrument enabling producers to access markets for organic products and obtain premium prices. It also creates transparency as information in certified producing organizations and their products is made public.

Organic Inspection and Certification Flow Chart

Summary Process For Organic Inspection / Certification Of Producers or Processors

  1. Producers/ processors must complete the application forms and other related documents, submits them to the certification division and pays the application fee.
  2. Certification division assign inspector to inspect production/processing sites. The inspector makes contact and appointment with the applicant.
  3. The Inspector prepares all needed materials, equipment and documents and conducts field and processing sites inspection.
  4. The Inspector submits reports to the certification committee via the agriculture or processing division. Certifiers examine the completeness of the report.
  5. The certifier prepares certification summary, writes his evaluation and recommendation and submit them to the certification committee. Certification committee evaluates if compliance or non-compliance of standards is evident and makes certification decision.
  6. OCCP informs the producers/processors the decision whether approved or not. If certification is approved, the right to label the product organic is granted and the OCCP Seal is allowed for use, after signing a seal agreement with OCCP.
  7. If certification is denied, an appeal in writing is submitted to the appeals committee. The Executive Directors reviews the decision and informs the certification committee, the new decision or retains the original decision.