February 10, 2011
On February 9, USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) published updated financial information on its two organic certification cost-share programs: the Agricultural Management Assistance (AMA) and National Organic Certification Cost Share Programs (NOCCSP). The publication provides a state-by-state overview of all program activity from fiscal year 2008 through to the present, including data from reports submitted by participant states since the March 2010 NOP report to Congress on cost share activity. From now on, the data will be updated twice a year when new budgets and annual disbursements are finalized.
According to the publication, allocations to organic cost share programs ranged from $5,000 to $1,050,000 per state/territory in fiscal year 2011. The programs experienced a 10 percent increase in participation and in the funds disbursed between fiscal years 2009 and 2010. NOP anticipates continued robust growth of the programs during fiscal year 2011.
In fiscal year 2010, over five thousand organic producers from 48 states participated for a total funding amount of over $5 million. The top ten states (by number of participants) in order were CA, WA, WI, NY, MN, VT, ME, OR, IA, and PA.
The National Organic Certification Cost Share Program, administered through the State Departments of Agriculture, reimburses eligible producers and handlers for a portion of the costs of organic certification. Each state receives an allocation based on the number of certified organic operations in the state and spending history. Recipients receive up to 75 percent of their annual certification costs to a maximum payment of $750 per year, and must be certified by a USDA accredited certifying agent (ACA).
For more information on OCCSP visit the Organic Production section of our website or visit NOP’s website. For a list of ACAs in your state, go here.