What is “Organic,” Anyway?
What is organic food and why should I care? More here>
A Certified Organic Farm is in compliance with the National Organic Program (NOP) standards, and has been inspected and certified by an accredited USDA certifying agent. Products have been grown/raised without the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, growth hormones, irradiation, or genetic engineering. The certification process is rigorous and requires extensive record keeping, payment of an annual fee, and an annual inspection. Additional information can be found at their site.
The National Organic Program allows farmers who sell less than $5,000 worth of organic produce per year to call their produce “organic” if they follow the national standards. This produce is not certified.
Becoming Certified Organic
Baystate Organic Certifiers certifies many organic farms in Connecticut and Massachusetts. Visit their website or call Don Franczyk at 774-872-5544 for more information.
CT NOFA Farmers Pledge
The Farmer’s Pledge is a commitment to farming, marketing and farm management in accordance with sound ecological and economic principles. It is separate and distinct from “Certified Organic.” There is no inspection process for the Farmer’s Pledge, but the farmers have signed the Pledge to show their commitment to its principles. CT NOFA administers the Farmer’s Pledge program in Connecticut. However, we do not investigate or make any guarantee that the individual farmer is complying with the Farmer’s Pledge.
Every spring, all our Farmer’s Pledge farms are featured in our annual Farm & Food Guide. Last year 10,000 copies of the Guide were printed and distributed all over the state at farmers markets, agricultural and environmental events, and wherever people were looking for healthy and sustainably grown food. In addition the Guide is posted on our website, so your farm’s listing is available to everyone who visits ctnofa.org. It’s a great way to spread the word about your farm.
A copy of the listing form can be found HERE or contact us to send a copy.
All you have to do to be included in the program is to sign a copy of the Pledge and return it to CT NOFA. You can download a current copy HERE. We’ll initial, date, laminate and return it to you. You are encouraged to display your copy of the Pledge at your farm, farm stand, farmers’ markets and anywhere else where folks care about good food. CT NOFA keeps a copy of the Pledge for our records. To participate you or your farm must be a CT NOFA member. The Farmer’s Pledge must be renewed each year, and CT NOFA will contact you each winter to get your Pledge updated.
New Pledge farmers can get started at any time of year, so if you are interested in signing the Pledge or receiving more information, please contact the CT NOFA Office at (203) 888-5146 or email@example.com.