Services

Services: Organic Certification

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Organic Certification is issued to those who demonstrate compliance with National Organic Program regulations (7 CFR part 205) and can substantiate their ability to maintain the integrity of their organic operation.

ASCO staff and inspectors are knowledgeable, and experienced individuals with a combined experience of over 100 years in conventional and organic agriculture.

We are here to help you through the application process, apprise you of any new regulatory changes, and maintain continued organic certification in compliance of the NOP.

Services: Organic Transitional Verification Program

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The Transitional Organic Verification Program is designed to assist growers in developing an organic system plan that can substantiate their ability to maintain the integrity of their organic operation. The goal of the program is to insure a smooth transition from conventional farming to organic in alignment with the National Organic Program (NOP) requirements.

This program includes grower assistance in the following areas:

  • Verification of land history
  • Organic Seed sourcing
  • Soil Fertility requirements
  • Water quality issues
  • Prevention of cross contamination –Notifications to others
  • Comingling & contamination prevention, employee training
  • Monitoring practices
  • Cultural activities
  • Equipment requirements
  • Use of allowed materials
  • Product trace back

ASCO will provide all regulatory information to ensure your understanding of organic requirements of the NOP. Additionally, ASCO will provide all necessary forms to assist you in documenting the farming activities of your organic operation as required in the various areas listed above.

Services: Materials Verification Programs

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USDA/AMS Title 7, Part 205 - National Organic Program

The ASCO Materials Verification Program offers comprehensive review of your organic input materials in compliance of NOP requirements for use in organic certified operations.

Link to NOP: www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/nop

CDFA Division 7, Chapter 5 – Fertilizing Materials

The ASCO Materials Verification Program offers comprehensive review of your organic input materials in compliance of CDFA requirements for use in organic certified operations. We also assist fertilizer manufacturers preparing for compliance with CDFA Division 7, Chapter 6, Article 5, 14601 (f), Fertilizing Materials Law and Regulations.

Link to CDFA: www.cdfa.ca.gov/is/docs/fertilizerlaw®ulations.pdf

ASCO Materials Verifications include the following:

  • Review of Confidential Statement of Formula
  • Onsite inspection
  • Records audit
  • Samples taken for lab analysis for verification of inputs

Once verification is completed, manufacturers of organic input materials are issued an ASCO Materials Verification Certificate for a 12 month period.

Disclaimer: This certificate and verification is in effect until such time as the manufacturer makes any changes in the product (s) composition and/or manufacturing process, which was not disclosed to, or reviewed by ASCO prior to the manufacturer instituting any such changes.

Services: Food Safety & LGMA Verification Program

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The ASCO Food Safety verification program uses the Produce GAPs, Harmonization Food Safety Standard (HFSS) and the Leafy Green Marketing Agreement, "Commodity Specific Food Safety Guidelines for The Production and Harvest of Lettuce and Leafy Greens"(LGMA). to assess the farming operations ability to comply with the rigorous requirements for United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement (LGMA) as well as other governing agencies.

The guidance, tools and information necessary to build a comprehensive food safety program are provided to the client in an organized Operating System Plan Manual.

The verification program is an ongoing verification service. The audit is an assessment and verification of the farming operations best management practices, and ability to maintain a comprehensive food safety program. The service includes; annual site inspections, pre-harvest inspections, records audits including trace back and product recall policy verification. Unannounced inspections are performed to confirm continuance of Good Agricultural Practices under this program. Growers enrolled in the ASCO Food Safety Verification Program will be prepared for government agency audits and other third party food safety certification audits as well as compliance to the demands of private contract buyer requirements.

 

Services: Sustainable Agricultural Certification

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ASCO has developed a comprehensive scheme of standards for Sustainable Agricultural Practices Certification. These standards outline procedures, policies and Best Management Practices (BMPs) as guidance to attain the goals of Sustainable Agriculture.

Sustainability in agriculture is the continuous effort and use of BMP’s to maintain and improve the responsible stewardship of agricultural land. Documented action plans and monitoring records provide evidence of the farming operations application of those BMP’s providing an auditable system plan.

ASCO provides the resources necessary to keep a comprehensive documented management system to implement and maintain Sustainable Agricultural Practices. Periodic review and annual certification will help measure the sustainability of the farming operations practices and the effectiveness of their efforts to increase environmental health and biodiversity.