2017-09-07 / Community

Organic certification cost share more accessible to farmers

EAST LANSING - Organic farmers and ranchers can now visit their local U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) office to apply for cost share reimbursement through the Organic Certification Cost Share Program (OCCSP).

OCCSP provides cost share assistance to producers and handlers of agricultural products who are obtaining or renewing their certification under the National Organic Program (NOP). Certified operations may receive up to 75 percent of their certification costs paid from Oct. 1, 2016, through Sept. 30, 2017, not to exceed $750 per certification scope.

Eligible costs include application fees, inspection costs, fees related to equivalency agreement/arrangement requirements, travel/per diem for inspectors, user fees, sales assessments and postage.

Ineligible costs include equipment, materials, supplies, transitional certification fees, late fees and inspections necessary to address National Organic Program regulatory violations.

To learn more about organic certification cost share, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/organic or contact a local FSA office by visiting offices.usda.gov.

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