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External Resources

There are many resources available to simplify your organic planning process.

Below, we’ve provided a list of our favorites by category. We hope to introduce you to tools that will help in your certification journey.

Online Learning

“Where can I learn more about certification?”
National Organic Program

The USDA National Organic Program (NOP) offers a wealth of knowledge about organic certification. This website helps you answer the question, “Is organic an option for me?” You’ll find links to videos, training modules, and other resources that explain the certification process step-by-step.

Organic Integrity Learning Center

The Organic Integrity Learning Center (OILC) is a free online training platform. Create a free account and choose from over 30 courses that cover a range of USDA Organic topics. Learn the essentials of the organic system, find out what to expect during an inspection, and more! Click the button below to see everything you need to know to get started.

Funding Sources

“What financial resources are available?”
Organic Certification Cost Share Program

This program provides cost share assistance to producers and handlers of agricultural products who are obtaining or renewing their National Organic Program (NOP) certification. Certified operations may receive up to 50% of their certification costs paid during the program year, not to exceed $500 per certification scope. Click below to learn more and apply.

National Resource Conservation Service

The National Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) can help organic producers develop a conservation plan that meets their goals, and can often help with financial assistance to implement elements of the plan. Organic producers may apply for all NRCS financial assistance programs. The Environmental Quality Incentives Program – Organic Initiative specifically targets organic producers. Though payment is lower, there is less competition for ranking in the organic pool. Each state and area has unique ranking criteria due to local conservation issues.

Find Organic Operations

“What organic suppliers are in my area?”
Organic Integrity Database

Find a certified organic farm or business, or search for an operation with specific characteristics. Listings on the Organic Integrity Database (OID) come from USDA-accredited certifying agents. You can use this website to find organic suppliers of a specific product, do market research for organic products in your area, check on the certification status of a particular operation, and more!

Inputs

“What fertilizers, insecticides, sanitizers, etc. can I use?”
National List

The National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances, often referred to as the National List, is a section of the federal organic standards under the National Organic Program. This is the best place to find what substances (fertilizers, insecticides, sanitizers, etc.) are allowed and prohibited for use in organic production and handling operations. These substances are widely known as inputs, since they’re substances that you put into an organic system.

Organic Materials Review Institute

The Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) is an organization that has a user-friendly, searchable list of input products that are allowed for use in organic production and processing according to the USDA National Organic Program, Canadian Organic Standards, and Mexican Organic Products Law. Watch this video tutorial to learn how to use OMRI’s online list of inputs.

Resource Hubs

“Where can I find articles, videos, and other resources to help my organic  operation?”
ATTRA

The National Center for Appropriate Technology’s ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture program is a trusted source of sustainable and organic agriculture information and maintains a knowledge base of practical multimedia resources for farmers, ranchers, and educators. Click below to see their organic resource library that features topics such as organic certification, organic regulations, and organic practices.

eOrganic

This is the public website of the Organic Agriculture Community of the Extension Foundation. Click below to find organic articles, webinars, videos, and more. You can also submit questions through their “Ask an Expert” feature. eOrganic’s mission is to foster a research and outreach community, engage farmers and agricultural professionals through trainings and publications, and support research and outreach projects.

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