USDA Announces Rulemaking Process on Organic Appeals

Last week, USDA announced it will propose rulemaking on adverse actions appeals process within the national organic standards. 
The proposed rule will streamline the appeals process and ensure that the National Organic Program (NOP) can more efficiently stop producers from marketing noncompliant products as organic. 
The rulemaking is part of USDA’s broad strategy to strengthen oversight of organic imports. In July, NOP hosted a virtual town hall to engage organic stakeholders as they begin the rulemaking process and is focusing on ten topic areas:
Federated organic certificates
Satellite offices
Inspector qualifications, training, and field evaluations
Certification of grower groups
Operations excluded from organic certification
Increased reporting to the Organic Integrity Database
Import certificates
Equivalency arrangements
Unannounced inspections
Updates to noncompliance and appeals process
The proposed rule is expected to be released in March 2019. CCOF will share all announcements and stakeholder participation opportunities on our blog.
For questions on the rulemaking process, please contact the NOP at (202) 260-8077.