James DiMaio

  • signed up on Produce 2017-04-04 14:35:49 -0400

    Produce Certification


    The vast majority of CNG's 750+ producers (85%) have produce certification. These farmers are found in 47 states and a few Canadian provinces. They typically sell at farmers markets, through CSA's and at local, independent grocers. 

    Certified Naturally Grown farmers don't use synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicide, or GMOs, just like certified organic farmers. The main difference between CNG and organic is our certification model, which relies on peer inspections, transparency, and direct relationships. 

    Produce Standards            Allowed and Prohibited Substances       Seeds and Seedlings

    Inspection Forms              Certification Requirements                      Biofilm Issue Brief


    Frequently Asked Questions

    Why are the reasons farmers get CNG certified? Some farmers join for the the marketing advantages of being a part of a recognized national organization. Other farmers are drawn to opportunities to network with and get feedback from other like-minded farmers, and some want a way to highlight their values and production practices. Many consider CNG a good alternative or supplement to being certified organic. The benefits of CNG include marketing, camaraderie, and a sense of belonging to a national movement. 

    Is there a deadline to apply? We accept applications throughout the year. Be prepared to arrange your on-site inspection within two growing season months of submitting your application.  

    Can I certify some but not all of my crops? While most of our certified producers have their entire operation certified, there are some situations where a farmer hasn't managed to grow certain crops according to CNG standards (stone fruits or grapes are especially challenging in many areas). It is possible to exclude some crops from certification, and have other crops get CNG certified. We just ask that it be made clear which is which during marketing, and that everything is explained clearly on the farm's public profile on the CNG website.

    Click here for more FAQs on our produce certification program. 

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