Mar 23, 2022
USDA amends national list for organic crops and handling

On March 23, the USDA published a final rule in the Federal Register to amend the National List for crops and handling based on public input and October 2019 NOSB recommendations.

This final rule provides additional options for organic farms by adding two substances to the list of substances allowed for organic crop production.

This final rule allows:

  • Fatty alcohols as sucker control in organic tobacco production.
  • Potassium hypochlorite to treat irrigation water used in organic crop production.

This final rule also removes the redundant listing for dairy cultures in the handling section of the National List at § 205.605(a). Dairy cultures will continue to be allowed as ingredients in organic handling under the separate listing for microorganisms.

The Organic Foods Production Act created the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (National List) as a tool for managing the substances used in organic production over time. In general, natural substances are allowed in organics, and synthetic substances are prohibited. The National List identifies the limited exceptions to these general rules. The National List also identifies nonagricultural and nonorganic agricultural substances (ingredients) that may be used in organic handling. Changes to the National List require a National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) recommendation and USDA rulemaking, a process that provides multiple opportunities for public comment.

View the final rule at


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