Treated wood (lumber) is not allowed for new installations or replacement when in contact with soil or livestock.
Is a pre-existing building or fence made with treated wood allowed?
For organic crop and livestock producers with pre-existing buildings or fencing constructed of treated lumber, these structures may be exempt and will not need to be removed.
What do I need to do if I have treated wood on my farm?
Crop and livestock contact with treated wood must be prevented at all times, even in cases of pre-existing treated wood.
Am I able to use treated wood in any scenario on my farm?
Using treated wood products for construction on your certified organic land will result in a noncompliance and potential loss of certification for the impacted parcel, crop, and/or livestock.
Treated wood is prohibited for use when:
- Building a pasture farrowing hut, a cattle feed bunk or a shelter
- Building feed or crop storage areas
- Fencing (e.g., posts, etc.) in livestock pastures, holding, or confining areas
- Supporting (e.g., posts, plant stakes, hoop houses, etc.) on-site structures
What if the treated wood will not be not near organic production areas?
Treated wood that is isolated from organic production — such as wooden building materials that are not in direct contact with either livestock or crops — might not be prohibited, but could be restricted in its applications. OTCO requires a buffer zone to prevent contamination. For example, you may need a barrier of some sort between the post and its surroundings. There is zero allowance for any wood treated with creosote.