In response to the recent identification of multiple instances of fraud, sourcing issues and production issues with international imports of organic grains, Oregon Tilth Certified Organic (OTCO) implemented a new approval policy to prevent misrepresentation of organic product.
Effective immediately, in addition to all OTCO-certified operations importing at-risk products — currently grains, corn, soy and wheat — providing full chain of custody documentation that can be readily audited and verified, only after OTCO verification and approval may the product then be eligible for sales as organic in the United States.
Poor or incomplete documentation to verify the organic integrity of the product throughout the entire supply chain will not be permitted to be sold or represented as “organic” and the client will be issued a notice of noncompliance. Records must include all import-related documentation to verify a product’s intact organic status, and demonstrate that no prohibited substances (e.g. fumigation) have been applied during any import/export activities.
OTCO will continue to monitor and review imports of organic products in an effort to prioritize and increase oversight of international products.