Assessing the Effectiveness of the National Organic Program
As more farmers and importers look to fill the need The House Ag Subcommittee on Biotechnology, Horticulture, and Research told Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Greg Ibach there must be a balance between the demand for organic products and the integrity of organic seal.
"It'd be better to figure out how to give them resources to comply with the regulations than to lower the regulations. Our Chairman mentioned it's tough to achieve that organic certification so I certainly appreciate how that process is done. And we need to protect that. Not protectionism but a least protect the integrity of that. I want to reiterate the chairman's comments about not relaxing organic standards but doing whatever we can to support especially small and medium sized farmers to adopt healthy soill practices, organic practices, There's broad bipartisan consensus in making sure that we protect the organic certification process."
That was House Ag Committee Chair Collin Peterson of Minnesota, California's Doug Lamalfa a rice grower in his home state, Washington's Kim Schrier and Illinois' Rodney Davis.
California's. TJ Cox urged the Ibach to raising the indemnity levels for organic farmers whose costs are higher than non-organic producers.
The meeting also addressed increased cooperation between the USDA and Border Patrol to reduce fraudulent organic imports.