Mar 6, 2024
New Hampshire drops state’s organic certification program

New Hampshire’s Department of Agriculture is dropping its organic certification program. To remain eligible to market products as organic, farmers need to sign up with another certification agency by April 27.

The organic certification program is just one of four New Hampshire Department of Agriculture, Markets, and Food (NHDAMF) programs not mandated by state statute. Three inspectors, an administrative assistant and division director oversee the program.

New Hampshire Organic labelAccording to a Feb. 27 news release from Steve Jasper, agriculture department commissioner, the decision stems from a 2017 audit of the organic certification program’s adherence to its mission and a review of staffing constraints, program efficiencies, modernization, and funding throughout NHDAMF.

The review has led to “difficult decisions regarding many treasured NHDAMF programs,” according to the release.

Costs for certification through the New Hampshire program were “significantly” lower than the industry standard, according to the Northeast Organic Farmers Association of New Hampshire, cited in a NPR story on the state’s decision.

New Hampshire lawmakers recently voted against a bill that would have approved about $220,000 for the NHDAMF to hire a full-time and a part-time organic certification inspector for one year, according to the report.



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