Transitioning to organic records

What records do I need to keep during transition?

As a transitioning farm, you must keep records for all your activities and purchases to show compliance with the organic standards. Some records will be submitted with your organic certification application, commonly referred to as your Organic System Plan (OSP). Other records will be reviewed by an inspector when they audit your farm. It’s important to set up a recordkeeping plan early on to track information from seed to sale.

Generally, there are four main records to keep:

Farm map
The farm map must include the name or code of the parcel to be certified, the location, description, and size of any buffer areas, neighboring land uses, processing areas, location of buildings, and the presence or use of treated lumber on the farm.

History of land use and all material(s) used
Records of land-use practices and all materials applied from the start of your transition process over the last three years. If you are not the landowner, or haven’t owned the land the full three years, you’ll need to provide a signed statement or affidavit that no prohibited materials have been used.

Planned materials
A full list of all materials (e.g., seeds, fertilizers, pest, weed and disease control materials) to be used in the upcoming year.

Planned crops
A full list of all of your crops to be produced, including the field location and acreage for each crop (updates may be made throughout the year).

Your inspector will review the following information for materials used:

  • Product name
  • Manufacturer name
  • Original or photocopy of label with ingredients (if available)
  • Purchase receipts
  • Quantity and location of material applied
  • Compliance (OMRI Certificate or Certifier Approval Letter)

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