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IFOAM Standard

The IFOAM Standard for Organic Production and Processing, Version 1.0.
Approved by the IFOAM General Assembly through electronic vote in August 2012
Print version

SECTION A - GENERAL

 

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Section A Section A - General Download

SECTION B – DEFINITIONS, PRINCIPLES, RECOMMENDATIONS AND STANDARDS

Chapter 1 DEFINITIONS

Additive: An enrichment, supplement or other substance which can be added to a foodstuff or other product to affect its keeping quality, consistency, color, taste, smell or other technical property (For full definition, see Codex Alimentarius).
Amino acid isolate: amino acid substance (e.g. methionine, lysine, threonine) that has been isolated or extracted to a more pure form than occurs in the parent material (e.g. soy, corn, etc).
Aquaculture: The managed production of aquatic plants and/or animals in fresh, brackish or salt water in a circumscribed (demarcated) environment.
Ayurvedic: Traditional Indian system of medicine.
Biodiversity: The variety of life forms and ecosystem types on Earth. Includes genetic diversity (i.e. diversity within species), species diversity (i.e. the number and variety of species) and ecosystem diversity (total number of ecosystem types), as well as the dynamic effects they engender.
Breeding: Selection of plants or animals to reproduce and / or to further develop desired characteristics in succeeding generations.
Buffer Zone: A clearly defined and identifiable boundary area bordering an organic production site that is established to limit application of, or contact with, prohibited substances from an adjacent area.
Certification Body: The body that conducts (grants) certification, as distinct from standard-setting and inspection.
Compost: Decayed organic material used as a fertility amendment in agricultural production, produced by a combination of actions over time by microbes, invertebrates, temperature, and other elemental factors (e.g., moisture content, aeration). Composted material shows practically no substantive indication as to the original substrate(s) from which it was made.
Contamination: Contact of organic product or land with a substance prohibited for organic production or handling.
Control Body: A third-party organization that has independent oversight of the organic status of an operation. A Control Body may be a certification body, a governmental competent authority, a participatory guarantee system, a cooperative, or a community supported agriculture program
Conventional: Conventional means any material, production or processing practice that is not organic or organic “in-conversion”.
Conversion Period: The time between the start of the organic management and the acceptance of crops and animal husbandry as organic.
Crop Rotation: The practice of alternating the species or families of annual and/or biennial crops grown on a specific field in a planned pattern or sequence to break weed, pest and disease cycles and to maintain or improve soil fertility and organic matter content.
Culture: Microorganisms, tissue, or organ, growing on or in a medium and substrate.
Direct Source Organism: The specific plant, animal, or microbe that produces a given input or ingredient, or which gives rise to a secondary or indirect organism that produces an input or ingredient.
Disinfect: To reduce, by physical or chemical means, the number of potentially harmful microorganisms in the environment, to a level that does not compromise product safety or suitability.
Farm Unit: The total area of land under control of one farmer or a collective of farmers, including all the farming activities or enterprises.
Genetic Diversity: The variability among living organisms from agricultural, forest and aquatic ecosystems; this includes diversity within species and between species.
Genetic Engineering: A set of techniques from molecular biology (such as recombinant DNA) by which the genetic material of plants, animals, microorganisms, cells and other biological units are altered in ways or with results that could not be obtained by methods of natural mating and reproduction or natural recombination.
Techniques of genetic engineering include, but are not limited to: recombinant DNA, cell fusion, micro and macro injection, encapsulation. Genetically engineered organisms do not include organisms resulting from techniques such as conjugation, transduction and natural hybridization.
Genetically Modified Organism (GMO): A plant, animal, or microbe that is transformed by genetic engineering.
Genetic Resources: Genetic material of actual or potential value.
Green Manure: A crop that is incorporated into the soil for the purpose of soil improvement. This may include spontaneous crops, plants or weeds.
Habitat: The area over which a plant or animal species naturally exists; the area where a species occurs. Also used to indicate types of habitat, e.g. seashore, riverbank, woodland, grassland.
High Conservation Value Area: An area that has been identified as having outstanding and critical importance due to its environmental, socioeconomic, biodiversity or landscape values.
Homeopathic Treatment: Treatment of disease based on administration of remedies prepared through successive dilutions of a substance that in larger amounts produces symptoms in healthy subjects similar to those of the disease itself.
Hydroponic Systems: Crop production systems in inert media and/or water solutions using dissociated nutrients (in suspension or solution) as prime source of nutrient supply. Growing crops in water only is not considered a hydroponic system.
Ingredient: Any substance, including additives, used in the manufacture or preparation of a product or present in the final product although possibly in a modified form.
Irradiation (ionizing radiation): High energy emissions from radio-nucleotides, capable of altering a product’s molecular structure for the purpose of controlling microbial contaminants, pathogens, parasites and pests in food, preserving food or inhibiting physiological processes such as sprouting or ripening, or for the purpose of inducing mutations for selection and breeding.
Label: Any written, printed or graphic representation that is present on a product, accompanies the product, or is displayed near the product.
Landless animal husbandry systems: systems by which the operator of the livestock does not manage agricultural land and/or has not established a long-term cooperation agreement with another operator organically managing agricultural land, whether it be for pasture, supply of feed or disposal of manure & effluent.
Manure: All livestock excrement that may be mixed with litter material.
Media (plural) or Medium (singular): The substance in which an organism, tissue, or organ exists, which includes the substrate.
Multiplication: The growing on of seed stock or plant material to increase supply for future planting.
Nanomaterials: substances deliberately designed, engineered and produced by human activity to be in the nanoscale range (approx 1-300 nm) because of very specific properties or compositions (e.g. shape, surface properties, or chemistry) that result only in that nanoscale. Incidental particles in the nanoscale range created during traditional food processing such as homogenization, milling, churning, and freezing, and naturally occurring particles in the nanoscale range are not intended to be included in this definition.
Operator: An individual or business enterprise, responsible for ensuring that products meet the requirements of an organic standard.
Organic agriculture: Organic agriculture is a production system that sustains the health of soils, ecosystems and people. It relies on ecological processes, biodiversity and cycles adapted to local conditions, rather than the use of inputs with adverse effects. Organic agriculture combines tradition, innovation and science to benefit the shared environment and promote fair relationships and a good quality of life for all involved.
Organic Product: A product which has been produced, processed, and/or handled in compliance with organic standards.
Organic Seed and Plant Material: Seed and planting material that is produced under certified organic management.
Parallel Production: Any production where the same unit is growing, breeding, handling or processing visually indistinguishable products in an organic system and in a non-organic system. A situation with “organic” and “in conversion” production of the same product is also parallel production. Parallel production is a special instance of split production.
Processing Aid: Any substance or material, not including apparatus or utensils, and not consumed as a product ingredient by itself, intentionally used in the processing of raw materials, the product or its ingredients, to fulfill a certain technical purpose during treatment or processing and which may result in the non-intentional, but unavoidable presence of residues or derivatives in the final product. This includes filtration auxiliaries.
Propagation: The reproduction of plants by sexual (i.e. seed) or asexual (i.e. cuttings, root division) means.
Ruderal: (of a plant) growing in waste places, along roadsides or in rubbish.
Sanitize: To adequately treat produce or product-contact surfaces by a process that is effective in destroying or substantially reducing the numbers of vegetative cells of microorganisms of public health concern, and other undesirable microorganisms, but without adversely affecting the product or its safety for the consumer.
Soil fertility: The potential capacity of the soil to supply nutrients required for plant growth.
Soil health: Soil health is the continued capacity of the soil to function as a vital living system, within ecosystem and land use boundaries, to sustain biological productivity, maintain the quality of air and water environments and promote plant, animal and human health. Soil health is the ability of soil to perform according to its potential and changes over time due to human use and management or to unusual natural events.
Soil quality: Soil quality is the functional capacity of the soil, within ecosystem and land-use boundaries, to sustain biological productivity, maintain environmental quality and promote plant, animal and human health. Soil quality is a function of its physical and chemical properties, many of which are a function of soil organic matter content, which influence the capacity of soil to perform crop production and environmental functions, including the absence of contaminants.
Split Production: Where only part of the farm or processing unit is organic. The remainder of the property can be (a) non-organic, (b) in conversion. Also see parallel production.
Substrate: The substance that an organism grows in and lives upon.
Synthetic: A substance that is formulated or manufactured by a chemical process or by a process that chemically changes a substance extracted from a naturally occurring plant, animal or mineral source, except that such a term shall not apply to substances created by naturally occurring biological processes.

Chapter 2 ORGANIC ECOSYSTEMS

Section 2.1 Ecosystem Management

General Principle

Organic farming benefits the quality of ecosystems.

Requirements

2.1.1) Operators shall design and implement measures to maintain and improve landscape and enhance biodiversity quality, by maintaining on-farm wildlife refuge habitats or establishing them where none exist. Such habitats may include, but are not limited to:
a. extensive grassland such as moorlands, reed land or dry land;
b. in general all areas which are not under rotation and are not heavily manured: extensive pastures, meadows, extensive grassland, extensive orchards, hedges, hedgerows, edges between agriculture and forest land, groups of trees and/or bushes, and forest and woodland;
c. ecologically rich fallow land or arable land;
d. ecologically diversified (extensive) field margins;
e. waterways, pools, springs, ditches, floodplains, wetlands, swamps and other water rich areas which are not used for intensive agriculture or aquaculture production;
f. areas with ruderal flora;
g. wildlife corridors that provide linkages and connectivity to native habitat.
2.1.2) Clearing or destruction of High Conservation Value Areas is prohibited. Farming areas installed on land that has been obtained by clearing of High Conservation Value Areas in the preceding 5 years shall not be considered compliant with this standard.

Section 2.2 Soil and Water Conservation

General Principle

Organic farming methods conserve and improve the soil, maintain water quality and use water efficiently and responsibly.

Requirements

2.2.1) Operators shall take defined and appropriate measures to prevent erosion and minimize loss of topsoil. Such measures may include, but are not limited to: minimal tillage, contour plowing, crop selection, maintenance of soil plant cover and other management practices that conserve soil.
2.2.2) Land preparation by burning vegetation or crop residues is prohibited.

Regional or other exception

Exceptions may be granted in cases where burning is used to suppress the spread of disease, to stimulate seed germination, to remove intractable residues, or other such exceptional cases.
2.2.3) Operators shall return nutrients, organic matter and other resources removed from the soil through harvesting by the recycling, regeneration and addition of organic materials and nutrients.
2.2.4) Stocking densities and grazing shall not degrade land or pollute water resources. This applies also to all manure management and applications.
2.2.5) Operators shall prevent or remedy soil and water salinization where these pose a problem.
2.2.6) Operators shall not deplete nor excessively exploit water resources, and shall seek to preserve water quality. They shall where possible recycle rainwater and monitor water extraction.

Section 2.3 Inappropriate technologies

General Principle

Organic agriculture is based on the precautionary principle and should prevent significant risks by adopting appropriate technologies and rejecting unpredictable ones.

Requirements

2.3.1) The deliberate use or negligent introduction of genetically engineered organisms or their derivatives is prohibited. This shall include animals, seed, propagation material, feed, and farm inputs such as fertilizers, soil conditioners, or crop protection materials, but shall exclude vaccines.
2.3.2) Organic operators shall not use ingredients, additives or processing aids derived from GMOs.
2.3.3) Inputs, processing aids and ingredients shall be traced back one step in the biological chain to the direct source organism *(see definition) from which they are produced to verify that they are not derived from GMOs.
2.3.4) On farms with split (including parallel) production, the use of genetically engineered organisms is not permitted in any production activity on the farm.
2.3.5) The use of nanomaterials is prohibited in organic production and processing, including in packaging and product contact surfaces. No substance allowed under this standard shall be allowed in nano form.

Section 2.4 Wild Harvested Products and Common/Public Land Management

General Principle

Organic management sustains and prevents degradation of common biotic and abiotic resources, including areas used for rangeland, fisheries, forests, and forage for bees, as well as neighboring land, air and water.

Requirements:

2.4.1) Wild harvested products shall only be derived from a sustainable growing environment. Products shall not be harvested at a rate that exceeds the sustainable yield of the ecosystem, or threaten the existence of plant, fungal or animal species, including those not directly exploited.
2.4.2) Operators shall harvest products only from a clearly defined area where prohibited substances have not been applied.
2.4.3) The collection or harvest area shall be at an appropriate distance from conventional farming or other pollution sources in order to avoid contamination.
2.4.4) The operator who manages the harvesting or gathering of common resource products shall be familiar with the defined collecting or harvesting area, including the impacts of collectors not involved in the organic scheme.
2.4.5) Operators shall take measures to ensure that wild, sedentary aquatic species are collected only from areas where the water is not contaminated by substances prohibited in these standards.

Chapter 3 GENERAL REQUIREMENTS FOR CROP PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL HUSBANDRY

Section 3.1 Split Production and Parallel Production

General Principle

The whole farm, including livestock, is converted to organic management practices according to the standards over a period of time.

Requirements:

3.1.1) If the whole farm is not converted (split production) the organic and conventional parts of the farm shall be clearly and continuously separated.
3.1.2) Simultaneous production of visually indistinguishable organic and nonorganic crops or animal products (parallel production) is only permitted where such production is undertaken in a way that allows clear and continuous and verifiable separation of all operations and products claimed as organic. Organic and non-organic units in parallel production must be physically, financially and operationally separated.
3.1.3) Prohibited materials shall be stored in separate locations from those where organic products are grown and handled.

Section 3.2 Maintenance of Organic Management

General Principle

Organic production systems require an ongoing commitment to organic production practices.

Recommendations:

In case of split or parallel production, the operator should demonstrate continuous efforts towards bringing the entire farm under organic management, such as increasing the size of the organic operation relative to the conventional or adopting organic practices in the conventional operation.

Requirements:

3.2.1) The production system shall not rely upon continuous switching between organic and conventional management.

Section 3.3 Organic production of micro-organisms for processed food and feed

3.3.1) Only organically produced substrate shall be used.

Chapter 4 CROP PRODUCTION

Section 4.1 Choice of Crops and Varieties and propagation of planting materials

General Principle

Species and varieties cultivated in organic agriculture systems are selected for adaptability to the local soil and climatic conditions and tolerance to pests and diseases. All seeds and plant material are organic.

Recommendation:

Operators should give preference to organically bred varieties (varieties from organic breeding programs, see 4.7) when available.

Requirements:

4.1.1) Operators shall use organically produced seed and planting material whenever available in appropriate varieties and quality. When organic seed and planting materials are not available in sufficient quantity or quality for the required variety or equivalent varieties, in-conversion materials may be used. When none of these are available, conventional materials may be used provided that they have not been treated with post-harvest pesticides not otherwise permitted by this standard.

Regional or other exception

Where post-harvest chemical treatment is prescribed by law for phytosanitary purposes, treated seed and plant material may be used.
4.1.2) Seeds and plant materials shall be propagated under organic management for one generation, in the case of annuals, and for perennials, two growing periods, or 18 months, which ever is the longer, before being certified as organic seed and plant material.
4.1.3) Propagation may be based on generative propagation (seeds) as well as vegetative propagation derived from various plant organs e.g.
a. partitioned tubers, scales, husks,
b. partitioned bulbs, brood, bulbs, bulbils, offset bulbs etc.,
c. layer, cut and graft shoots
d. rhizomes
e. meristem culture
4.1.4) All multiplication practices on the farm, except meristem culture, shall be under organic management.
4.1.5) Vegetal propagation materials, bedding materials and substrates shall only consist of substances listed in appendices 1 and 2.

Section 4.2 Conversion Period (Plant Production)

General Principle

A conversion period enables the establishment of an organic management system and builds soil health and fertility.

Requirements:

4.2.1) All the requirements of this standard shall be met for the duration of the conversion period.
4.2.2) The start of the conversion period shall be calculated from the date of agreement with the control body.

Regional or other exception

The conversion period may be calculated retroactive to the application only on the basis of sound and incontrovertible evidence of full application of the standard for a period at least as long as 4.2.3.
4.2.3) The length of the conversion period shall be at least:
- 12 months before sowing or planting in the case of annual production
- 12 months before grazing or harvest for pastures and meadows
- 18 months before harvest for other perennials.
4.2.4) Crops harvested less than 36 months after the application of a prohibited input to crop or soil shall not be used or sold as organic.
4.2.5) Plant products may be used or sold as “in-conversion” provided that they have undergone a 12 month conversion period.

Section 4.3 Diversity in Crop Production

General Principle

The development of living soils is the foundation of organic production. Soil health and quality are the basis of soil management practices and are critical to successful pest, disease and weed management. Organic growing systems are soil based, care for the soil and surrounding ecosystems, provide support for a diversity of species, are based on nutrient recycling and mitigate soil and nutrient losses.

Requirements:

4.3.1) Crop rotations for annual crops shall be established, to manage pressure from pests, weeds and diseases and to maintain soil fertility, unless the operator ensures diversity in plant production by other means. Crop rotations shall be diverse and include soil-improving plants such as green manure, legumes or deep rooting plants.
4.3.2) For orchards and plantations, there shall be managed floor cover and diversity or refuge plantings.

Section 4.4 Soil Fertility and Fertilization

General Principle

Organic farming returns microbial, plant or animal material to the soil to increase or at least maintain its fertility and biological activity.

Recommendation:

“The fertility program should be based on material of microbial, plant or animal origin, such as green manure, compost or mulch, obtained through the following sources in this order of priority:
a) organically produced on the farm;
b) of organic quality, obtained from the surrounding farms or natural environment;
c) other inputs allowed under Appendix 2”.
“Nutrients and fertility products shall be applied in a way that does not harm soil, water, and biodiversity (requirement 4.4.3). This should be evaluated through the use of appropriate indicators, such as:
a) no significant accumulation of heavy metals or phosphorus in the soil.
b) no significant contribution to the eutrophication of water bodies.
c) balanced nutrient supply as compared to the nutrient needs.”

Requirements:

4.4.1) Soil organic matter, microbial activity and general soil health and fertility shall be improved if low and maintained or improved if satisfactory. The operator shall prevent over-accumulation of heavy metals and other pollutants in the soils.
4.4.2) Material of microbial, plant or animal origin shall form the basis of the fertility program. Maintenance of fertility may not rely solely on off-farm inputs.
4.4.3) Nutrients and fertility products shall be applied in a way that does not harm soil, water, and biodiversity.
4.4.4) Material applied to the land or crop shall be in accordance with Appendix 2.
4.4.5) Human excrement shall be handled in a way that reduces risk of pathogens and parasites and shall not be applied within six months of the harvest of annual crops for human consumption with edible portions in contact with the soil.
4.4.6) Mineral fertilizers shall only be used in a program addressing long-term fertility needs together with other techniques such as organic matter additions, green manures, crop rotations and nitrogen fixation by plants. Their use shall be justified by appropriate soil and leaf analysis or diagnosed by an independent expert.
4.4.7) Mineral fertilizers shall be applied in the form in which they are naturally composed and extracted and shall not be rendered more soluble by chemical treatment.
4.4.8) Chilean nitrate and all synthetic fertilizers, including urea, are prohibited.
4.4.9) The production of terrestrial plants shall be soil-based. The production of such crops in hydroponic systems is prohibited.
4.4.10) For mushroom production, substrates shall be made of products of organic agriculture, or other non-chemically treated natural products such as peat, wood, mineral products or soil.

Section 4.5 Pest, Disease and Weed Management

General Principles

Organic farming systems apply biological and cultural means to prevent unacceptable losses from pests, diseases and weeds. They use crops and varieties that are well-adapted to the environment and a balanced fertility program to maintain fertile soils with high biological activity, locally adapted rotations, companion planting, green manures, and other recognized organic practices as described in this standard.

Recommendation:

In case operators need to use commercial formulated inputs, preference should be given to formulations approved for use in organic agriculture by a specialized organic material review organization/program.

Requirements:

4.5.1) The organic production system shall include positive processes/mechanisms to manage pests, weeds and diseases. These include:

a. choice of appropriate species and varieties;
b. appropriate rotation programs, intercropping and companion planting;
c. mechanical cultivation;
d. protection of natural enemies of pests through provision of favorable habitat, such as hedges, nesting sites and ecological buffer zones that maintain the original vegetation to house pest predators;
e. natural enemies including release of predators and parasites;
f. mulching and mowing;
g. grazing by animals;
h. mechanical controls such as traps, barriers, light and sound.
4.5.2) When the measures in 4.5.1 are not sufficient, pest, disease and weed management products that are prepared on the farm from local plants, animals and micro-organisms, or substances permitted under Appendix 3, may be used, provided that they do not jeopardize the ecosystem or the quality of organic products.
4.5.3) Physical methods for pest, disease and weed management are permitted, including the application of heat.
4.5.4) Thermal sterilization of soils is prohibited.

Regional or other exception

Exceptions may be granted to protect cropping structures in instances of severe disease or pest infestation that cannot be otherwise remedied through measures in 4.5.1 to 4.5.3.
4.5.5) Any formulated input shall have only active ingredients listed in Appendix 3. All other ingredients shall not be carcinogens, teratogens, mutagens, or neurotoxins.

Section 4.6 Avoiding Contamination

General Principle

All relevant measures are taken to ensure that organic soil and organic products are protected from contamination.

Requirements:

4.6.1) The operator shall monitor crop, soil, water, inputs for risks of contamination by prohibited substances and environmental contaminants.
4.6.2) The operator shall employ measures including barriers and buffer zones to avoid potential contamination and limit contaminants in organic products.
4.6.3) All equipment from conventional farming systems shall be thoroughly cleaned of potentially contaminating materials before being used on organically managed areas.
4.6.4) For synthetic structure coverings, mulches, fleeces, insect netting and silage wrapping, only products based on polyethylene and polypropylene or other polycarbonates, and biodegradable materials (e.g. starch based), are permitted. These shall be removed from the soil after use and shall not be burned on the farmland.

Section 4.7 Breeding of organic varieties

Explanatory Note: This section refers to breeding of organic varieties, not simply use or production of organic seeds from regular (conventional) varieties.

General Principles

Organic plant breeding and variety development is sustainable, enhances genetic diversity and relies on natural reproductive ability. Organic breeding is always creative, cooperative and open for science, intuition, and new findings. Organic plant breeding is a holistic approach that respects natural crossing barriers. Organic plant breeding is based on fertile plants that can establish a viable relationship with the living soil. Organic varieties are obtained by an organic plant breeding program.

Requirements:

4.7.1) To produce organic varieties, plant breeders shall select their varieties under organic conditions that comply with the requirements of this standard. All multiplication practices except meristem culture shall be under certified organic management.
4.7.2) Organic plant breeders shall develop organic varieties only on the basis of genetic material that has not been contaminated by products of genetic engineering.
4.7.3) Organic plant breeders shall disclose the applied breeding techniques. Organic plant breeders shall make the information about the methods, which were used to develop an organic variety, available for the public latest from the beginning of marketing of the seeds.
4.7.4) The genome is respected as an impartible entity. Technical interventions into the genome of plants are not allowed (e.g. ionizing radiation; transfer of isolated DNA, RNA, or proteins).
4.7.5) The cell is respected as an impartible entity. Technical interventions into an isolated cell on an artificial medium are not allowed (e.g. genetic engineering techniques; destruction of cell walls and disintegration of cell nuclei through cytoplast fusion).
4.7.6) The natural reproductive ability of a plant variety is respected and maintained. This excludes techniques that reduce or inhibit the germination capacities (e.g. terminator technologies).
4.7.7) Organic plant breeders may obtain plant variety protection, but organic varieties shall not be patented.

Chapter 5 ANIMAL HUSBANDRY

Section 5.1 Animal Management

General Principle

Organic livestock husbandry is based on the harmonious relationship between land, plants and livestock, respect for the physiological and behavioral needs of livestock and the feeding of good-quality organically grown feedstuffs.

Requirements:

5.1.1) Landless animal husbandry systems are prohibited.
5.1.2) The operator shall ensure that the environment, the facilities, stocking density and flock/herd size provides for the behavioral needs of the animals.
5.1.3) In particular, the operator shall ensure the following animal welfare conditions:

a. sufficient free movement and opportunity to express normal patterns of behavior, such as space to stand naturally, lie down easily, turn around, groom themselves and assume all natural postures and movements such as stretching, perching and wing flapping;
b. sufficient fresh air, water, feed and natural daylight to satisfy the needs of the animals;
c. access to resting areas, shelter and protection from sunlight, temperature, rain, mud and wind adequate to reduce animal stress;

Note: animals whose management system requires tethering to make use of grazing can still be managed in compliance with these requirements.

Regional or other exception

On holdings where, due to their geographical location and structural constraints, it is not possible to allow free movement of animals, tethering of animals may be allowed for a limited period of the year or of the day. In such cases, animals may not be able to turn around freely but other requirements of 5.1.3 must be fulfilled.
5.1.4) Herd animals shall not be kept in isolation from other animals of the same species. This provision does not apply to small herds for mostly self-sufficient production. Operators may isolate male animals, sick animals and those about to give birth.
5.1.5) Construction materials and methods and production equipment that might significantly harm human or animal health shall not be used.
5.1.6) Operators shall manage pests and diseases in livestock housing and shall use the following methods according to these priorities:
a. preventative methods such as disruption, elimination of habitat and access to facilities;
b. mechanical, physical and biological methods.
c. substances (other than pesticides) used in traps.
d. substances listed in Appendix 5 of this standard;

Regional or other exception

Other products may be used if required by law for the control of notifiable diseases.
5.1.7) When animals are housed, the operator shall ensure that:

a. where animals require bedding, adequate natural materials are provided. Bedding materials that are normally consumed by the animals shall be organic.
d. building construction provides for insulation, heating, cooling and ventilation of the building, ensuring that air circulation, dust levels, temperature, relative air humidity, and gas concentrations are within levels that are not harmful to the livestock.
e. no animals shall be kept in closed cages.
f. animals are protected from predation by wild and feral animals.
g. the above animal welfare requirements are fulfilled.
5.1.8) All animals shall have unrestricted and daily access to pasture or a soil-based open-air exercise area or run, with vegetation, whenever the physiological condition of the animal, the weather and the state of the ground permit. Such areas may be partially covered. Animals may temporarily be kept indoors because of inclement weather, health condition, reproduction, specific handling requirements or at night. Lactation shall not be considered a valid condition for keeping animals indoors.
5.1.9) The maximum hours of artificial light used to prolong natural day length shall not exceed a maximum that respects the natural behavior, geographical conditions and general health of the animals. For laying hens, a minimum daily rest period of 8 continuous hours without artificial light shall be respected.

Section 5.2 Conversion Period

General Principle

The establishment of organic animal husbandry requires an interim period, the conversion period. Animal husbandry systems that change from conventional to organic production require a conversion period to develop natural behavior, immunity and metabolic functions.

Requirements:

5.2.1) All the requirements of this standard for land and animals must be met for the duration of the conversion period before the resulting product may be considered as organic. Land and animals may be converted simultaneously.
5.2.2) The start of the conversion period shall be calculated from the date of application for agreement with the control body.

Regional or other exception

The conversion period may be calculated retroactive to the application only on the basis of sound and incontrovertible evidence of full application of the standard for a period at least as long as 4.2.3
5.2.3) Where existing animals on a farm are converted to organic they shall undergo a one- time minimum conversion period at least according to the following schedule:
Production: Meat - Conversion Period: 12 months
Production: Dairy, fibers and other nonslaughter animal products - Conversion Period: 90 days
Production: Eggs - Conversion Period: 42 days

Section 5.3 Animals Sources/Origin

General Principle

Organic animals are born and raised on organic holdings.

Requirements:

5.3.1) Animals shall be raised organically from birth.

Regional or other exception

When organic livestock is not available conventional animals may be brought in according to the following age limits:
a. 2 day old chickens for meat production;
b. 18 week old hens for egg production;
c. 2 weeks for any other poultry;
d. piglets up to 6 weeks and after weaning;
e. dairy calves up to 4 weeks old that have received colostrum and are fed a diet consisting mainly of full milk.
5.3.2) Breeding stock may be brought in from conventional farms to a yearly maximum of 10% of the adult animals of the same species on the farm. Female adult breeding replacements must be nulliparous and be converted to organic management prior to the start of their gestation.

Regional or other exception

Exceptions of more than 10% may be granted, limited to the following circumstances:

a. unforeseen severe natural or man-made events;
b. considerable enlargement of the farm;
c. establishment of a new type of animal production on the farm;
d. holdings with less than 10 animals.

Section 5.4 Breeds and Breeding

General Principle

Breeds are adapted to local conditions.

Requirements:

5.4.1) Breeding systems shall be based on breeds that can reproduce successfully under natural conditions without human involvement.
5.4.2) Artificial insemination is permitted.
5.4.3) Embryo transfer techniques and cloning are prohibited.
5.4.4) Hormones are prohibited to induce ovulation and birth unless applied to individual animals for medical reasons and under veterinary supervision.

Section 5.5 Mutilations

General Principle

Organic farming respects the animal’s distinctive characteristics.

Requirements:

5.5.1) Mutilations are prohibited.

Regional or other exception

The following exceptions may be used only if animal suffering is minimized and anesthetics are used where appropriate:
a. castrations;
b. tail docking of lambs;
c. dehorning;
d. ringing;
e. mulesing is permitted until December 31, 2015.

Section 5.6 Animal Nutrition

General Principle

Organic animals receive their nutritional needs from organic forage and feed of good quality.

Requirements:

5.6.1) Animals shall be fed organic feed.

Regional or other exception

Operators may feed a limited percentage of non-organic feed under specific conditions in the following cases:
a. organic feed is of inadequate quantity or quality;
b. areas where organic agriculture is in early stages of development;
c. grazing of non-organic grass or vegetation during seasonal migration.

In no such case may the percentage of non-organic feed exceed 10% dry matter per ruminant and 15% dry matter per non-ruminant calculated on an annual basis.
Operators may feed non-organic feed for a limited time under specific conditions, following extreme weather conditions or man made or natural disasters beyond the control of the operator
5.6.2) Animals shall be offered a balanced diet that provides all of the nutritional needs of the animals in a form allowing them to exhibit their natural feeding and digestive behavior.
5.6.3) The prevailing part (at least more than 50%) of the feed shall come from the farm unit itself, surrounding natural grazing areas, or be produced in cooperation with other organic farms in the region.

Regional or other exception

Exceptions may be permitted in regions where organic feed production is in an early stage of development or temporarily deficient, or in cases of unpredictably low crop production on the farm or in the region.
5.6.4) For the calculation of feeding allowances only, feed produced on the farm unit during the first year of organic management may be classed as organic.
This refers only to feed for animals that are being produced within the farm unit. Such feed may not be sold or otherwise marketed as organic.
5.6.5) The following substances are prohibited in the diet:
a. farm animal byproducts (e.g. abattoir waste) to ruminants;
b. slaughter products of the same species;
c. all types of excrements including droppings, dung or other manure;
d. feed subjected to solvent extraction (e.g. hexane) or the addition of other chemical agents;
e. synthetic amino-acids and amino-acid isolates;
f. urea and other synthetic nitrogen compounds;
g. synthetic growth promoters or stimulants;
h. synthetic appetizers;
i. preservatives, except when used as a processing aid;
j. artificial coloring agents.
5.6.6) Animals may be fed vitamins, trace elements and supplements from natural sources.

Regional or other exception

Synthetic vitamins, minerals and supplements may be used when natural sources are not available in sufficient quantity and quality.
5.6.7) All ruminants shall have daily access to roughage. Ruminants must be grazed throughout the entire grazing season(s).

Regional or other exception

Ruminants may be fed with organic carried fresh fodder during the grazing season where weather and soil conditions do not permit grazing. The organic carried fresh fodder shall not exceed 20% of the amount of forage grazed during the grazing season. Animal welfare shall not be compromised.
5.6.8) Fodder preservatives such as the following may be used:
a. bacteria, fungi and enzymes;
b. natural products of food industry;
c. plant based products.
d. vitamins and minerals subject to the order of preference in 5.6.6.

Regional or other exception

Synthetic chemical fodder preservatives such as acetic, formic and propionic acid are permitted in severe weather conditions.
5.6.9) Young stock from mammals shall be provided maternal milk or organic milk from their own species and shall be weaned only after a minimum period as specified below:
a. Calves and foals: 3 months
b. Piglets: 6 weeks
c. Lambs and kids: 7 weeks

Section 5.7 Veterinary Medicine

General Principle

Organic management practices promote and maintain the health and well-being of animals through balanced organic nutrition, stress-free living conditions and breed selection for resistance to diseases, parasites and infections.

Requirements:

5.7.1) The operator shall take all practical measures to ensure the health and well being of the animals through preventative animal husbandry practices such as:
a. selection of appropriate breeds or strains of animals;
b. adoption of animal husbandry practices appropriate to the requirements of each species, such as regular exercise and access to pasture and/or open-air runs, to encourage the natural immunological defense of animal to stimulate natural immunity and tolerance to diseases;
c. provision of good quality organic feed;
d. appropriate stocking densities;
e. grazing rotation and management.
5.7.2) If an animal becomes sick or injured despite preventative measures, that animal shall be treated promptly and adequately, if necessary in isolation and in suitable housing. Operators shall give preference to natural medicines and treatments, including homeopathy, Ayurvedic medicine and acupuncture.
5.7.3) Use of synthetic allopathic veterinary drugs or antibiotics will cause the animal to lose its organic status. Producers shall not withhold such medication where doing so will result in unnecessary suffering of the livestock.

Regional or other exception

The animal may retain its organic status if:
a. the operator can demonstrate compliance with 5.7.1, and b natural and alternative medicines and treatments are unlikely to be effective to cure sickness or injury, or are not available to the operator, and
b. the chemical allopathic veterinary drugs or antibiotics are used under the supervision of a veterinarian, and
c. withdrawal periods shall be not less than double of that required by legislation, or a minimum of 14 days, whichever is longer.
d. this exception is not granted more than 3 times on a given animal.
5.7.4) Prophylactic use of any synthetic allopathic veterinary drug is prohibited.
5.7.5) Substances of synthetic origin used to stimulate production or suppress natural growth are prohibited.
5.7.6) Vaccinations are allowed only in the following cases:
a. when an endemic disease is known or expected to be a problem in the region of the farm and where this disease cannot be controlled by other management techniques, or
b. when a vaccination is legally required.

Section 5.8 Transport and Slaughter

General Principle

Organic animals are subjected to minimum stress during transport and slaughter.

Requirements:

5.8.1) Animals shall be handled calmly and gently during transport and slaughter.
5.8.2) The use of electric prods and other such instruments is prohibited.
5.8.3) Organic animals shall be provided with conditions during transportation and slaughter that reduce and minimize the adverse effects of: stress, loading and unloading, mixing different groups of animals, extreme temperatures and relative humidity. The type of transport shall meet the specific needs of the species being transported.
5.8.4) The operator shall ensure an adequate food and water supply during transport and at the slaughterhouse.
5.8.5) Animals shall not be treated with synthetic tranquilizers or stimulants prior to or during transport.
5.8.6) Each animal or group of animals shall be identifiable at each step in the transport and slaughter process.
5.8.7) Slaughterhouse journey times shall not exceed eight hours.

Regional or other exception

When there is no certified organic slaughterhouse within eight hours travel time, an animal may be transported for a longer period if the animals are given a rest period and access to water.
5.8.8) Those responsible for transportation and slaughtering shall avoid contact (sight, sound or smell) of each live animal with dead animals or animals in the killing process.
5.8.9) Each animal shall be effectively stunned before being bled to death. The equipment used for stunning shall be in good working order.

Regional or other exception

Exceptions can be made according to religious practice. Where animals are bled without prior stunning this should take place in a calm environment.

Section 5.9 Bee Keeping

General Principle

Bee keeping is an important activity that contributes to enhancement of the agriculture and forestry production through the pollinating action of bees.

Requirements:

5.9.1) The areas within a 3 km radius of the hives shall consist of organically managed fields, uncultivated land and/or wild natural areas in a way that ensures access to sources of honeydew, nectar and pollen that meets organic crop production requirements sufficient to supply all of the bees’ nutritional needs.
5.9.2) The operator shall not place hives within a foraging distance (5 kms) of fields or other areas with a high contamination risk (e.g. conventional fields, industrial zones and highways).
5.9.3) The hives shall consist primarily of natural materials and present no risk of contamination to the environment or the bee products. Use of construction materials with potentially toxic effects is prohibited.
5.9.4) At the end of the production season, hives shall be left with reserves of honey and pollen sufficient for the colony to survive the dormancy period. Any supplementary feeding in response to unexpected need shall be carried out only between the last honey harvest and the start of the next nectar or honeydew flow period. In such cases, organic honey or organic sugar shall be used.
5.9.5) Bee colonies may be converted to organic production. Introduced bees shall come from organic production units when available. Bee products may be sold as organically produced when the requirements of this standard have been complied with for at least one year.
5.9.6) During the conversion period, the wax shall be replaced by organically produced wax, except where no prohibited products have been previously used in the hive and where is no risk of contamination of wax. In cases where all the wax cannot be replaced during a one-year period, the conversion period shall be extended to cover the full replacement of the wax.
5.9.7) For pest and disease control the following are permitted:
a. lactic, formic acid;
b. oxalic, acetic acid;
c. sulfur;
d. natural essential oils (e.g. menthol, eucalyptol, camphor);
e. Bacillus thuringiensis;
f. steam, direct flame and caustic soda for hive disinfection.
5.9.8) Where preventative measures fail, veterinary medicinal products may be used provided the following are adhered to:
a. preference is given to phyto-therapeutic and homeopathic treatment;
b. if allopathic chemically synthesized medicinal products are used, the
bee products shall not be sold as organic;
c. treated hives shall be placed in isolation and undergo a conversion
period of one year.
5.9.9) The practice of destroying the male brood is permitted only to contain infestation with Varroa (mites).
5.9.10) The health and welfare of the hive shall be primarily achieved by hygiene and hive management.
5.9.11) The destruction of bees in the combs as a method of harvesting of bee products is prohibited.
5.9.12) Mutilations, such as clipping of the wings of queen bees, are prohibited.
5.9.13) Artificial insemination of queen bees is permitted.
5.9.14) The use of chemical synthetic bee repellents is prohibited. The use of smoke should be kept to a minimum. Acceptable smoking materials should be natural or from materials that meet the requirements of these standards.
5.9.15) Honey temperatures shall be maintained as low as possible, and not exceed 45°C, during the extraction and processing of products derived from bee keeping.

Chapter 6 AQUACULTURE PRODUCTION STANDARDS

Section 6.1 Conversion to Organic Aquaculture

General Principle

Conversion in organic aquaculture production reflects the diversity of species and production methods.

Requirements:

6.1.1) Operators shall comply with all the relevant general requirements of chapters 3 and 5.
6.1.2) The conversion period of the production unit shall be at least one life cycle of the organism or one year, whichever is shorter.
6.1.3) Operators shall ensure that conversion to organic aquaculture addresses environmental factors, and past use of the site with respect to waste, sediments and water quality.
6.1.4) Production units must be located at an appropriate minimum distance from contamination sources and conventional aquaculture.

Section 6.2 Aquatic Ecosystems

General Principle

Organic aquaculture management maintains the biodiversity of natural aquatic ecosystems, the health of the aquatic environment, and the quality of surrounding aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem.

Requirements:

6.2.1) Aquatic ecosystems shall be managed to comply with relevant requirements of chapter 2.
6.2.2) Operators shall take adequate measures to prevent escapes of introduced or cultivated species and document any that are known to occur.
6.2.3) Operators shall take verifiable and effective measures to minimize the release of nutrients and waste into the aquatic ecosystem.
6.2.4) Fertilizers and pesticides are prohibited unless they appear in Appendices 2 and 3.

Section 6.3 Aquatic Plants

General Principle

Organic aquatic plants are grown and harvested sustainably without adverse impacts on natural areas.

Requirements:

6.3.1) Aquatic plant production shall comply with the relevant requirements of chapters 2 and 4.
6.3.2) Harvest of aquatic plants shall not disrupt the ecosystem or degrade the collection area or the surrounding aquatic and terrestrial environment.

Section 6.4 Breeds and Breeding

General Principle

Organic aquatic animals begin life on organic units.

Requirements:

6.4.1) Aquatic animals shall be raised organically from birth.
Regional or other exception
When organic aquatic animals are not available, brought-in conventional animals shall spend not less than two thirds of their life span in the organic system.
When organic stock is not available, conventional sources may be used. To promote and establish the use of organic stock, the control body shall set time limits for the selected use of non-organic sources.
6.4.2) Operators shall not utilize artificially polyploided organisms or artificially produced monosex stock.
6.4.3) Aquatic animal production systems shall use breeds and breeding techniques suited to the region and the production method.

Section 6.5 Aquatic Animal Nutrition

General Principle

Organic aquatic animals receive their nutritional needs from good quality, organic sources.

Requirements:

6.5.1) Aquatic animals shall be fed organic feed.

Regional or other exception

Operators may feed, up to 31st December 2014, a limited percentage of non-organic feed under specific conditions for a limited time in the following cases:
a. organic feed is of inadequate quantity or quality;
b. areas where organic aquaculture is in early stages of development.

In no case may the percentage of non-organic feed exceed 5% dry matter calculated on an annual basis.
6.5.2) The dietary requirements for aquatic animals shall comply with the requirements of 5.6.4 and 5.6.5.
6.5.3) Use of water containing human excrement is prohibited.

Section 6.6 Aquatic Animal Health and Welfare

General Principles

Organic management practices promote and maintain the health and well-being of animals through balanced organic nutrition, stress-free living conditions appropriate to the species and breed selection for resistance to diseases, parasites and infections.

Requirements:

6.6.1) Operators shall comply with relevant requirements of section 5.7.
6.6.2) Prophylactic use of veterinary drugs is prohibited.
6.6.3) Operators must use natural methods and medicines, as the first choice, when treatment is necessary. Use of chemical allopathic veterinary drugs and antibiotics is prohibited for invertebrates.
6.6.4) Synthetic hormones and growth promoters are prohibited for use to artificially stimulate growth or reproduction.
6.6.5) Stocking densities do not compromise animal welfare.
6.6.6) Operators shall routinely monitor water quality, stocking densities, health, and behavior of each cohort (school) and manage the operation to maintain water quality, health, and natural behavior.

Section 6.7 Aquatic Animal Transport and Slaughter

General Principle

Organic aquatic animals are subjected to minimum stress during transport and slaughter.

Requirements:

6.7.1) Operators shall comply with relevant requirements of section 5.8.
6.7.2) The operator shall handle live organisms in ways that are compatible with their physiological requirements.
6.7.3) Operators shall implement defined measures to ensure that organic aquatic animals are provided with conditions during transportation and slaughter that meet animal specific needs and minimize the adverse effects of:
a. diminishing water quality;
b. time spent in transport;
c. stocking density;
d. toxic substances;
e. escape.
6.7.4) Aquatic vertebrates shall be stunned before killing. Operators shall ensure that equipment used to stun animals is sufficient to remove sensate ability and/or kill the organism and is maintained and monitored.
6.7.5) Aquatic animals shall be handled, transported and slaughtered in a way that minimizes stress and suffering, and respects species-specific needs.

Chapter 7 PROCESSING AND HANDLING

Section 7.1 General

General Principle

Organic processing and handling provides consumers with nutritious, high quality supplies of organic products and organic farmers with a market without compromise to the organic integrity of their products.

Requirements:

7.1.1) Handlers and processors shall not co-mingle organic products with nonorganic products.
7.1.2) Handlers and processers shall ensure traceability in the organic processing and handling chain.
7.1.3) All organic products shall be clearly identified as such and processed, stored and transported in a way that prevents substitution by or contact with conventional products through the entire process.
7.1.4) When non-organic products are prepared or stored in the preparation unit, the operator shall inform the control body.
7.1.5) The handler or processor shall take all necessary measures to prevent organic products from being contaminated by pollutants and contaminants, including the cleaning, decontamination, or if necessary disinfection of facilities and equipment.
7.1.6) The handler or processor shall identify and minimize risks of environmental pollution resulting from their activity.
7.1.7) Processors shall respect the principles of good manufacturing practices. This shall include maintaining appropriate procedures based on identification of critical processing steps.

Section 7.2 Ingredients

General Principle

Organic processed products are made from organic ingredients.

Requirements:

7.2.1) All ingredients used in an organic processed product shall be organically produced except for those additives and processing aids that appear in Appendix 4.

Regional or other exception

In cases where an ingredient of organic origin is commercially unavailable in sufficient quality or quantity, operators may use non-organic raw materials, provided that:
a. they are not genetically engineered or contain nanomaterials , and
b. the current lack of availability in that region is officially recognized1 or prior permission from the control body is obtained.
7.2.2) permission from the control body is obtained.
1 This may be by inclusion on a government or certification body list of permitted non organic agricultural ingredients.
7.2.3) Water and salt may be used as ingredients in the production of organic products and are not included in the percentage calculations of organic ingredients.
7.2.4) Minerals (including trace elements), vitamins and similar isolated ingredients shall not be used unless their use is legally required or where severe dietary or nutritional deficiency can be demonstrated in the market to which the particular batch of product is destined.
7.2.5) Preparations of micro-organisms and enzymes commonly used in food processing may be used, with the exception of genetically engineered microorganisms and their products. Cultures that are prepared or multiplied inhouse shall comply with the requirements for the organic production of microorganisms.
7.2.6) Yeast shall be included in the percentage calculations of organic ingredients by 2013.

Section 7.3 Processing Methods

General Principle

Organic processing and handling provides the consumer with high quality supplies of organic products without compromise to the integrity of the products and protects the environment.

Requirements:

7.3.1) Techniques used to process organic products shall be biological, physical, and mechanical in nature. Any additives, processing aids, or other material that reacts chemically with organic products or modifies it must appear in Appendix 4 and shall be used in accordance with noted restrictions.
7.3.2) Extraction shall only take place with water, ethanol, plant and animal oils, vinegar, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen. These shall be of a quality appropriate for their purpose.
7.3.3) Substances and techniques shall not be used that:
a. reconstitute properties lost by the processing and storage of organic products;
b. conceal negligent processing;
c. or may otherwise be misleading as to the true nature of these products.
Water may be used for re-hydration or reconstitution.
7.3.4) Irradiation is not permitted for any ingredient or the final product.
7.3.5) Filtration equipment shall not contain asbestos, or utilize techniques or substances that may contaminate the product. Filtration agents and adjuvants are considered processing aids and therefore must appear in Appendix 4.
7.3.6) The following conditions of storage are permitted (for allowed substances in these conditions, see Appendix 4):
a. controlled atmosphere;
b. temperature control;
c. drying;
d. humidity regulation.
7.3.7) Intentional manufacture or use of nanomaterials in organic products is prohibited.
7.3.8) Equipment surfaces and utensils that might come into contact with organic products shall be free of nanomaterials, unless there is verified absence of contamination risk.

Section 7.4 Pest and Disease Control

General Principle

Organic products are protected from pests and diseases by the use of good manufacturing practices that include proper cleaning, sanitation and hygiene, without the use of chemical pest control treatments or irradiation.

Requirements:

7.4.1) Handlers and processors shall manage pests and shall use the following methods according to these priorities:
a. preventative methods such as disruption, elimination of habitat and access to facilities;
b. mechanical, physical and biological methods, including visual detection, sound, ultra-sound, light and UV-light, temperature control, controlled atmosphere and diatomaceous earth.
c. substances according to the Appendices of this standard;
d. substances (other than pesticides) used in traps.
7.4.2) Prohibited pest control practices include, but are not limited to, the following substances and methods:
a. pesticides not contained in Appendix 3;
b. fumigation with ethylene oxide, methyl bromide, aluminum phosphide or other substance not contained in Appendix 4;
c. ionizing radiation.
7.4.3) The direct use or application of a prohibited method or material renders that product no longer organic. The operator shall take necessary precautions to
prevent contamination, including the removal of organic products and related packaging materials from the storage or processing facility, and measures to decontaminate the equipment or facilities. Application of prohibited substances to equipment or facilities shall not contaminate organic product handled or processed therein. Application of prohibited substances to equipment or facilities shall not compromise the organic integrity of product handled or processed therein and shall be documented to attest this.

Section 7.5 Packaging

General Principle

Organic product packaging has minimal adverse impacts on the product and on the environment.

Recommendation:

Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and aluminum should be avoided.

Requirements:

7.5.1) Operators shall not use packaging material that may contaminate organic products. This includes reused bags or containers that have been in contact with any substance likely to compromise the organic integrity. Packaging materials, and storage containers, or bins that contain a synthetic fungicide, preservative, fumigant, or nanomaterials are prohibited.
7.5.2) Operators shall demonstrate efforts to minimize packaging and/or choose packaging materials with minimum environmental impact. The total environmental impact of production, use and disposal of packaging must be considered.

Section 7.6 Cleaning, Disinfecting, and Sanitizing of Processing Facilities

General Principle

Organic products are safe, of high quality, and free of substances used to clean, disinfect, and sanitize the processing facilities.

Requirements:

7.6.1) Operators shall take all necessary precautions to protect organic products against contamination by substances prohibited in organic farming and handling, pests, disease-causing organisms, and foreign substances.
7.6.2) Water and substances that appear in Appendix 4, Table 2, may be used as equipment cleansers and equipment disinfectants that may come into direct contact with the product.2
7.6.3) Operations that use other cleaners, sanitizers, and disinfectants on product contact surfaces shall use them in a way that does not contaminate the product. The operator shall perform an intervening event between the use of any cleaner, sanitizer, or disinfectant and the contact of organic product with that surface sufficient to prevent residual contamination of that organic product.

Chapter 8 LABELING

Section 8.1 General

General Principle

Organic products are clearly and accurately labeled as organic.

Requirements

8.1.1) Products produced in accordance with this standard may be labeled as organic.
8.1.2) Labels must identify the following:
a. the person or company legally responsible for the product
b. the body that assures conformity to the applicable organic standard.
8.1.3) Processed products shall be labeled according to the following minimum requirements:
a. Where 95 to 100% of the ingredients (by weight) are organic, the product may be labeled as “organic”.
b. Where less than 95% but not less than 70% of the ingredients (by weight) are organic, these product cannot be labeled as “organic”, but phrases such as “made with organic ingredients” can be used, provided the proportion of organic ingredients is clearly stated.
c. Where less than 70% of the ingredients (by weight) are organic, the product cannot be labeled as “organic”, nor bear phrases such as “made with organic ingredients” on the package front, nor bear any certification body seal, national logo, or other identifying mark which represents organic certification of a product or product ingredients, but individual ingredients may be called “organic” in the ingredients list.

Notes on calculating percentages:
Water and salt are not included in the percentage calculations of organic ingredients.
8.1.4) All ingredients of a multi-ingredient product shall be listed on the product label in order of their weight percentage. It shall be apparent which ingredients are of organic certified origin and which are not. All additives shall be listed with their full name. If herbs and/or spices constitute less than 2% of the total weight of the product, they may be listed as “spices” or “herbs” without stating the percentage.
8.1.5) “In-conversion” ingredients may be used in multi-ingredient feed. However the ingredient list must identify their status and the total percentages of “inconversion”, organic and non-organic ingredients on a dry matter basis.
8.1.6) Multi-component products, live or unprocessed (such as vegetable boxes) may be sold or marketed as organic only if all the components are organic.
8.1.7) Organic products shall not be labeled as GMO-free in the context of these standards. Any reference to genetic engineering on product labels shall be limited to the production and processing methods themselves having not used GMOs.
8.1.8) The label for in-conversion products shall be clearly distinguishable from the label for organic products. Only single ingredient plant products may be labeled as “in-conversion”.

Chapter 9 SOCIAL JUSTICE

General Principle

Social justice and social rights are an integral part of organic agriculture and processing.

Recommendation:

Operators should positively and actively encourage the collective organization of their employees or contracted smallholders.
Permanent employees and their families should have access to education, transportation and health services.
Operators should respect the rights of indigenous peoples, and should not use or exploit land whose inhabitants or farmers have been or are being impoverished, dispossessed, colonized, expelled, exiled or killed, or which is currently in dispute regarding legal or customary local rights to its use or ownership.

Requirements:

9.1) Operators shall have and enforce a policy on social justice. This policy shall comply with the minimum national requirements and with all ILO conventions relating to labor welfare and the UN Charter of Rights for Children. This policy shall ensure that all permanent employees and their families shall have access to potable water, food, housing.

Regional or other exception

Operators who hire fewer than ten (10) persons for labor and those who operate under a state system that enforces social laws are not required to have such a policy.
9.2) In cases where production is based on violation of human rights and clear cases of social injustice, including recent violation of indigenous land rights, that product cannot be declared as organic.
9.3) Operators shall not use forced or involuntary labor.
9.4) Employees and contractors of organic operations shall have the freedom to associate, to organize and to bargain collectively.
9.5) Operators shall provide their employees and contractors equal opportunity and treatment, and shall not act in a discriminatory way.
9.6) Operators shall not hire child labor.

Regional or other exception

Children are allowed to experience work on their family’s farm or a neighboring farm provided that:
a. such work is not dangerous or hazardous to their health and safety;
b. it does not jeopardize the children’s educational, moral, social, and physical development;
c. children are supervised by adults or have authorization from a legal guardian.
9.7) Operators shall provide written terms and conditions of employment to both permanent and temporary employees. The terms and conditions must specify at least: wages, frequency and method of payment, location and type of work, hours of work and overtime, holiday pay, sick pay or sickness benefit and other benefits such as maternity and paternity leave.

Regional or other exception

In cases where:
- the operator is unable to write, or
- workers are hired for periods of less than 3 days, or
- emergency labor is needed to address unpredictable problems oral mutual agreements on the terms and conditions of employment are sufficient.
9.8) Workers shall be provided with adequate protection from noise, dust, sunlight and exposure to chemicals in all production and processing operations.

SECTION C – APPENDICES

APPENDIX 1: CRITERIA FOR THE EVALUATION OF INPUTS, ADDITIVES AND PROCESSING AIDS FOR ORGANIC PRODUCTION AND PROCESSING

General Principles

Organic production and processing systems are based on the use of natural, biological, renewable, and regenerative resources. Organic agriculture maintains soil fertility primarily through the recycling of organic matter. Nutrient availability is primarily dependent on the activity of soil organisms. Pests, diseases, and weeds are managed primarily through cultural practices. Organic livestock are nourished primarily through organically produced feed and forage, and are kept in living conditions that allow for natural behavior and avoidance of stress. Organic foods and other products are made from organically produced ingredients that are processed primarily by biological, mechanical, and physical means.

Input Lists

The following Appendices contain lists of the inputs, additives, processing aids, and other substances that are allowed for use in organic production, handling, and processing under this standard. These lists will be amended based on a review by the IFOAM Standard Committee, taking into account the below criteria for evaluation of inputs. The process for members or other stakeholders to request adding, deleting or otherwise changing the status of an input is located in IFOAM Policy 20 on the revision of the IFOAM Norms, which is accessible on the IFOAM website, www.ifoam.org, or can be ordered from the IFOAM Head Office (ogs@ifoam.org).

Production Input Criteria

Inputs used in organic production are consistent with the principles of organic farming outlined in the relevant chapters of the IFOAM Standard and are evaluated against criteria based upon the Precautionary Principle:
‘When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically. In this context the proponent of an activity, rather than the public, should bear the burden of proof.’
‘The process of applying the Precautionary Principle must be open, informed and democratic and must include potentially affected parties. It must also involve an examination of the full range of alternatives, including no action.’
The criteria used to evaluate organic production inputs are based on the following principles:
Necessity and alternatives: Any input used is necessary for sustainable production, is essential to maintain the quantity and quality of the product, and is the best available technology.
Source and manufacturing process: Organic production is based on the use of natural, biological, and renewable resources.
Environment: Organic production and processing is sustainable for the environment.
Human health: Organic techniques promote human health and food safety.
Quality: Organic methods improve or maintain product quality.
Social, Economic, and Ethical: Inputs used in organic production meet consumer perceptions and expectations without resistance or opposition. Organic production is socially just and economically sustainable, and organic methods respect cultural diversity and protect animal welfare.
Dossiers for a given substance must address these criteria based on the data requirements and decision rules stated in the criteria below, and meet the criteria to be added to the Appendices.

Section A) Crop and Livestock Criteria

The following criteria are applied to inputs that are used to evaluate dossiers submitted for crop production. The current IFOAM Standard does not have a separate appendix for livestock inputs. Development of a procedure and application of the criteria to inputs used in livestock production is a work in progress. See chapter 5 for livestock standards and inputs that may be used in organic livestock production.

Article 1 Necessity and Alternatives

All dossiers shall document the necessity of the substance, its essential nature in organic production systems, and the availability of alternative methods, practices, and inputs.
1.1) The input is necessary to produce crops or livestock in sufficient quantity and of suitable quality; to cycle nutrients; to enhance biological activity; to provide a balanced animal diet; to protect crops and livestock from pests, parasites, and diseases; to regulate growth; and to maintain and improve soil quality.
1.2) A given substance shall be evaluated with reference to other available inputs or practices that may be used as alternatives to the substance.
1.3) Every input shall be evaluated in the context in which the product will be used (e.g. crop, volume, frequency of application, specific purpose).

Article 2 Source and Manufacturing Process

All dossiers shall document sources and manufacturing processes.
2.1) Biological substances require a description of the source organism(s), a verifiable statement that they are not genetically engineered as defined by IFOAM, and the processes required to breed, culture, produce, multiply, extract, or otherwise prepare the substance for use. Naturally occurring plants, animals, fungi, bacteria and other organisms are generally allowed. Substances that undergo physical transformations, such as by mechanical processing, or biological methods, like composting, fermentation, and enzymatic digestion are also generally allowed. Limitations and prohibitions may be set based on consideration of the other criteria. Substances that are modified by chemical reaction are considered synthetic and therefore subject to protocol 2.3 below.
2.2) Natural non-renewable resources—such as mined minerals—require a description of the deposit or occurrence in nature. Non-renewable resources are generally restricted or limited in their use. They may be used as a supplement to renewable biological resources, provided they are extracted by physical and mechanical means, and are not rendered synthetic by chemical reaction. Inputs with high levels of natural environmental contaminants, such as heavy metals, radioactive isotopes, and salinity, may be prohibited or further restricted.
2.3) Synthetic substances from non-renewable resources are generally prohibited.
Synthetic, nature-identical products that are not available in sufficient quantities and qualities in their natural form may be allowed, provided that all other criteria are satisfied.
2.4) Inputs that are extracted, recovered, or manufactured by means that are environmentally destructive may be restricted or prohibited.

Article 3 Environment

All dossiers shall document the substance’s environmental impact.
3.1) The environmental impact of a substance includes, but is not limited to, the following parameters: Acute toxicity, persistence, degradability, areas of concentration; biological, chemical, and physical interactions with the environment, including known synergistic effects with other inputs used in organic production.
3.2) Effect of substance on the agro-ecosystem, including soil health; the effects of the substance on soil organisms; soil fertility and structure; crops and livestock.
3.3) Substances with high salt indexes, measured toxicity to non-target organisms, and persistent adverse effects may be prohibited or restricted in their use.
3.4) Inputs used for crop production shall be considered for their impact on livestock and wildlife.

Article 4 Human Health

All dossiers shall document the impacts of the substance on human health.
4.1) Documentation about human health includes, but is not limited to: acute and chronic toxicity, half-lives, degradants, and metabolites. Substances reported to have adverse effects may be prohibited or restricted in their use to reduce potential risks to human health.
4.2) Dossiers shall document any human who might be exposed by all possible pathways, at every stage: workers and farmers who extract, manufacture, apply, or otherwise use the substance; neighbors who may be exposed through its release into the environment; and consumers exposed by ingestion of foodborne residues.

Article 5 Quality

All dossiers shall document the substance’s effect on product quality. Quality includes, but is not limited to, nutrition, flavor, taste, storage, and appearance of the raw product.
6) Social, Economic, and Ethical Considerations
All dossiers shall document the substance’s social, economic, and cultural implications.
6.1) Social and economic implications include, but are not limited to, the impact of the substance on the communities where they are made and used, whether the use of the substance favors any economic structure and scale, and the historical use of the substance in traditional foods.
6.2) Consumer perceptions of the compatibility of inputs shall be taken into account. Inputs should not meet resistance or opposition of consumers of organic products. An input might be reasonably considered by consumers to be incompatible with organic production in situations where there is scientific uncertainty about the impact of the substance on the environment or human health. Inputs should respect the general opinion of consumers about what is natural and organic, e.g. genetic engineering is neither natural nor organic.
6.3) Inputs used for animal feed and livestock production shall be evaluated for their impact on animal health, welfare, and behavior. Medications must either alleviate or prevent animal suffering. Animal inputs that cause suffering or have a negative influence on the natural behavior or physical functioning of animals kept at the farm may be prohibited or restricted.

Section B) Processing and Handling Criteria

Introduction

These criteria apply to the evaluation of additives and processing aids. Substances used for technical, sensory, and dietary purposes are subject to these criteria. The criteria may also apply to substances in contact with the product. For processing, an input, non-organic ingredient, additive, or processing aid shall be essential to maintain or improve human health, environmental safety, animal welfare, product quality, production efficiency, consumer acceptance, ecological protection, biodiversity, or landscape. Carriers and preservatives used in the preparation of additives and processing aids must also be taken into consideration. The following aspects and criteria should be used to evaluate additives and processing aids in organic products. All of the criteria below shall be fully and positively documented in a dossier and review for an input to be allowed in organic processing.

Paragraph 1 Necessity and Alternatives

All dossiers shall document the necessity of the additive, processing aid, or carrier, its essential nature in organic processing and for the proposed application, and the availability of alternative methods, practices, and inputs. Each substance shall be evaluated with respect to its specific uses and applications, and shall be added when it is demonstrated to be absolutely essential and necessary for the production of a specific product that is consistent with organic principles stated in the IFOAM Standard.
1.1) All dossiers shall take into consideration the technical feasibility of the following alternatives:
a) Whole products that are organically produced according to the standard.
b) Products that are organically produced and processed according to the standard.
c) Purified products of raw materials of non-agricultural origin, e.g. salt.
d) Purified products of raw materials of an agricultural origin that have not been organically produced and processed according to the standard but appear on Appendix 4.
1.2) If an ingredient is required to manufacture a processed product to independently established minimum technical specifications recognized by consumers, and no organic substitute is available, then a non-organic ingredient may be deemed essential.
1.3) A given additive, processing aid, or carrier shall be evaluated with reference to other available ingredients or techniques that may be used as alternatives to the substance.
1.4) A substance is considered essential if a processed product requires that substance in order to meet established standards of identity, governmental regulations, or widely accepted consumer expectations.
2) Source and Manufacturing Process
All dossiers shall document the substance’s sources and manufacturing processes.
2.1) Additives and processing aids from biological sources, such as fermentation cultures, enzymes, flavors, and gums must be derived from naturally occurring organisms by the use of biological, mechanical, and physical methods. Nonorganic forms are allowed in organic products only if there are no organic sources.
2.2) Natural non-renewable resources — such as salt and mined minerals — must be obtained by physical and mechanical means, and are not rendered synthetic by chemical reaction. Dossiers must document and meet Food Chemical Codex specifications for natural contaminants, such as heavy metals, radioactive isotopes, and salinity, and may be prohibited or restricted based on unacceptable levels of contamination.
2.3) Synthetic nature-identical products that are not available in sufficient quantities and qualities in their natural form may be allowed provided all other criteria are satisfied.
2.4) Synthetic substances from non-renewable resources are generally prohibited as additives and processing aids.

Paragraph 3 Environment

All dossiers shall document the substance’s environmental impact. Documentation for environmental impact: The release of any harmful waste stream or by-products from both manufacturing and use in processing. Additives and processing aids that result in toxic by-products or polluting waste may be restricted or prohibited. This includes persistence, degradation, and areas of concentration.

Paragraph 4 Human Health

All dossiers shall document the impacts of the substance on human health.
4.1) Documentation about human health includes, but is not limited to: acute and chronic toxicity, allergenicity, half-lives, degradants, and metabolites.
Substances reported to have adverse effects may be prohibited or restricted in their use to reduce potential risks to human health.
4.2) Dossiers shall document any human who might be exposed by all possible pathways: workers and farmers who manufacture, apply, or otherwise use the substance; neighbors who may be exposed through release into the environment; and consumers exposed by ingestion of food-borne residues.
4.3) IFOAM will consider only processing aids and additives evaluated by the Joint FAO/ WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) of the Codex Alimentarius.
a) A food additive shall have an Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) level that is either ‘not specified’ or ‘not limited’ to qualify for use without limitation.
b) A food additive with any other status shall either be prohibited or have specific use restrictions to limit dietary exposure.
c) Evaluation of food additives shall also take into account known allergenicity and immunological responses.
4.4) Information about the practical daily intake of the substance by several groups of human should be taken into account. It should be demonstrated that no group has a normal intake, which is higher than the accepted ADI.

Paragraph 5 Quality (in processed products)

5.1) All dossiers shall document the substance’s effect on overall product quality, including, but not limited to, nutrition, flavor, taste, storage, and appearance.
5.2) Additives and processing aids shall not detract from the nutritional quality of the product.
5.3) A substance shall not be used solely or primarily as a preservative, to create, recreate or improve characteristics such as flavors, colors, or textures, or to restore or improve nutritive value lost during processing, except where the replacement of nutrients is required by law.
5.4) Non-organic ingredients, additives, or processing aids used to process organic products shall not compromise the authenticity or overall quality of the product or deceive the consumer of the product’s value.
5.5) Each additive shall be evaluated with respect to its specific uses and applications without preference for any specific techniques or equipment, and shall be added to the list only when it is demonstrated to be absolutely essential and necessary for the formulation and production of a specific product that is consistent with organic principles stated in the IFOAM Standard.

Paragraph 6 Social, Economic, and Ethical Considerations

6.1) All dossiers shall document the substance’s social, economic, and cultural, implications.
6.2) Social, economic, implications include, but are not limited to, adverse impacts on communities caused by the manufacture and use of the substance, whether certain economic structures or scales are favored by the use of the processing aid; and the historical use of the additive or processing aid in traditional products.
6.3) Consumer perceptions of the compatibility of additives and processing aids shall be taken into account. Any additives and processing aids shall respect consumer preferences and be accepted by organic consumers. An input might be reasonably considered by consumers to be incompatible with organic production in situations where there is scientific uncertainty about the impact of the substance on the environment or human health. Inputs should respect the general opinion of consumers about what is natural and organic, e.g. genetic engineering is neither natural nor organic.

APPENDIX 2

Fertilizers and Soil Conditioners

Attachments

Title Abstract Actions
APPENDIX 2 Fertilizers and soil conditioners Download

APPENDIX 3

Crop Protectants and Growth Regulators

Attachments

Title Abstract Actions
APPENDIX 3 Crop protectants and growth regulators Download

APPENDIX 4 – TABLE 1

List of approved additives and processing / post-harvest handling aids

Attachments

Title Abstract Actions
APPENDIX 4 – TABLE 1 List of approved additives and processing / post-harvest handling aids Download

APPENDIX 4 – TABLE 2

Indicative List of Equipment Cleansers and Equipment Disinfectants

Attachments

Title Abstract Actions
APPENDIX 4 – TABLE 2 Indicative list of equipment cleansers and equipment disinfectants Download