Updates for Importers in the United States

CCOF-certified importers should be prepared to provide detailed information during inspections to ensure that they meet the expectations of NOP Interim Instruction 4013. An importer is anyone who directly imports (importer of record), as well as operations who are the first certified organic business located in the United States taking title, receiving, or selling imported products.

Reviewing Websites Now a Bigger Part of Inspections and Certification

As organic operations and the internet have matured, we are now faced with many businesses that have a website or whose entire sales and marketing are based on an online presence. We are adopting a new approach toward the websites of certified operations to ensure a level playing field and avoid consumer confusion.

Tres maneras de hacer la programación de su inspección más fácil

Los Servicios de Certificación de CCOF (CCOF CS) deben asegurar que cada operación certificada sea inspeccionada al menos anualmente. Con el alto número de inspecciones que coordinamos, una operación dada normalmente tendrá sus inspecciones anuales entre siete y 16 meses aparte. Los inspectores independientes y el personal de operaciones de inspección se esfuerzan por planificar y programar viajes eficientes, lo que frecuentemente requiere programar múltiples inspecciones por viaje para reducir sustancialmente el costo de viaje facturado a cada operación.

Three Ways to Make Scheduling Your Inspection Easier

CCOF Certification Services (CCOF CS) must ensure that every certified operation is inspected at least annually. With the high numbers of inspections that we coordinate, a given operation will typically have their annual inspections anywhere between seven and 16 months apart. Independent inspectors and inspection operations staff strive to plan and schedule efficient trips, which frequently requires scheduling multiple inspections per trip in order to substantially reduce the travel cost billed to each operation.


New Certificates Soon After ALL Inspections

Did you know that all certified CCOF operations remain certified until their certification is formally withdrawn, suspended, or revoked? Did you know that you can have a new copy of your certificate — effectively a federal license — at any time? It’s true. You are certified and you can have a new certificate at any time. During the recent membership survey it came to our attention that waiting for new certificates is a challenge and creates unnecessary stress for some operations.

Significant Changes to Certification Manual - All CCOF Clients Affected

We have made some substantial changes to our Certification Services Program Manual.

These changes affect all CCOF clients, and you will be asked on your 2014 Continuation of Certification Contract (renewal contract) to verify that you agree to the policies described in this manual. In brief, the changes include:

Before and After Your Onsite Inspection

For most operations, your onsite CCOF inspection is one day out of the year. We know that this day can be stressful and takes your focus away from your day-to-day operations. However, there are things you can do before and after the inspection occurs to make sure that the inspection goes smoothly, your certification moves forward, and there are no speed bumps along the way. Read additional tips on how to keep inspection costs down.

Here are some tips for making the inspection process as easy and cost-effective as possible:


NOP Improves Organic Integrity

Recently, the NOP issued final rules and instructions to certifiers that provide important improvements to certification and require certifiers to raise the bar for both unannounced inspections and testing. These efforts help ensure that organic certification is rigorous and meaningful in the marketplace while guaranteeing that all NOP certified operations and certifiers are required to meet similar requirements. CCOF has performed both unannounced inspections and residue testing for some time and is therefore pleased to see these requirements effectively instituted by NOP.

New Client Compliance Agreement: Fix Problems at Inspection!

One of the most common sources of frustration for certified operations is being issued Notices of Noncompliance for minor paperwork issues, such as using an OMRI-listed material without first having written approval from CCOF. Our staff is committed to finding ways to work better with clients to prevent such problems and reduce the paper chase postinspection. A new idea that we are introducing is the CCOF Client Compliance Agreement.