USDA Funding Available
Organic Certification Cost Share Program
Organic farmers, ranchers, and handlers: take note! Funds for the USDA Organic Certification Cost Share Program are now available to certified organic operators through state departments of agriculture across the country. This program will make organic certification more affordable for organic producers and handlers by providing cost share assistance to USDA certified organic producers and handlers, covering as much as 75 percent of an individual applicant's certification costs, up to a maximum of $750 annually per certification scope.
To receive cost share assistance, certified organic producers and handlers should contact their appropriate state agencies via the contact information on the USDA National Organic Program's (NOP) cost share website. Each state has its own guidelines and requirements for reimbursement.
This program was part of the slate of programs NESAWG and our partners advocated for in the 2014 Farm Bill, in part because it benefits Northeastern farmers and ranchers. Many of our region's agriculture producers are small-scale, and the Cost Share program, with its $750 cap on reimbursement costs, is geared towards smaller-scale farmers and ranchers. In addition, $900,000 of the funds for this program are available only to farmers and ranchers in 15 states, including all 12 states in NESAWG's region: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and West Virginia.
The more people who use the program, the greater the justification for expanding the program in the future. So don't let these funds go to waste - if you are a certified organic farmer, rancher, or handler, apply today!