Client Notice for Inspections During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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Date Published
June 2, 2020

To continue to certify clients to the organic standards, CCOF is proceeding with organic inspections with modifications to protect the safety of our inspectors, our clients, and our communities. We encourage all clients to remain inspection-ready and maintain good documentation of their procedures.

Inspections will minimize COVID-19 risk by limiting the onsite time and using virtual methods whenever possible for segments of the inspection (i.e., interview and recordkeeping portions of the inspection, such as Organic System Plan review and audit trail exercises). The inspector will work with you to determine software and device platforms best suited to the scope and structure of your operation. Please work with your inspector to limit onsite time to only what is essential, working virtually on elements of the inspection that do not require onsite presence. If CCOF is unable to verify essential compliance points during any inspection, a follow up inspection may be required.    

For us to continue to serve you, all clients must be fully cooperative with the following safety precautions during the onsite portion of inspections during the COVID-19 pandemic: 
– All participants must be healthy with no respiratory symptoms in the past two weeks.
– Always observe social distancing requirements of at least six feet distance and no direct human contact.
– Wear masks at all times during the inspection.
– Wash hands and sanitize regularly.
– Minimize the number of people involved in the onsite portion of the inspection.
– Schedule the inspection at a time when there is low worker density on site.
– Assist inspectors as needed so they can avoid touching anything on site.
– Provide access to all areas, some of which may be inspected by the inspector alone.
– Cooperate and coordinate with the inspector to provide remote access to key staff, documents, and other resources needed to verify organic compliance.
– Where WHO, CDC, regional, state, or local guidelines require more strict precautions, those must be followed and communicated to the inspector in advance.

Distribute this list to everyone involved in the onsite portion of your inspection. If clients are unable or unwilling to provide a safe inspection environment, inspectors may end the inspection at any time to protect their safety. Clients will be responsible for all costs of an incomplete inspection, as well as any follow up inspections required to verify compliance with the organic standards. Ultimately, refusing or failing to complete an inspection may result in the loss of certification with CCOF. 

As always, we appreciate your cooperation with CCOF during your inspection, and we appreciate all your efforts to work with your inspector. CCOF inspectors are professionals and will work with you to make your inspection during this pandemic as efficient as possible. Thank you for your understanding as we create the safest space possible to continue to certify your operation to the organic standards. 

For more information, please email