Allowed & Prohibited Substances

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The following are lists containing some of commonly used substances that are allowed, restricted and prohibited in the CNG Program. This list is NOT exhaustive, but is meant to give producers and consumers a better general idea of our standards and address some common questions.

Because certain substances are allowed for particular uses, but not others, this list is organized by use: Fertility and Soil Amendments, Plant Pests and Diseases, Weed Control, Livestock External Parasiticides, Livestock Feed Additives, and Livestock Health. (Download content as PDF.)

NOTE: Check the OMRI List for materials or products that are not listed below.
NOTE: while there are many substances not listed under OMRI that would qualify for CNG use, any material listed by OMRI is allowed, with the exception of Rotenone, which is a prohibited substance.
NOTE: CNG allows the use of Paper Pot Transplanters.
NOTE: If you are a flower producer, please review our Considerations For Flower Farmers documentation.

Jump to
Allowed Substances for Produce
   Fertility, Soil Amendments and Potting Mixes
   Plant Pests and Disease
   Weed Management and Miscellaneous
Allowed Substances for Livestock
   Livestock External Parasiticides
   Livestock Feed Additives
   Livestock Health
Restricted Substances for Produce
   Fertility, Soil Amendments and Potting Mixes
   Plant Pests and Disease
   Weed Management and Miscellaneous
Restricted Substances for Livestock
Prohibited Substances for Produce
   Fertility, Soil Amendments and Potting Mixes
   Plant Pests and Disease
   Weed Management and Miscellaneous
Prohibited Substances for Livestock
Additional Useful Resources

Allowed Substances for Produce

Fertility, Soil Amendments and Potting Mixes - Allowed

Animal and plant products such as:

  • bone meal
  • blood meal
  • feather meal
  • fish emulsion
  • alfalfa meal
  • soybean meal
  • molasses
  • neem
  • yucca

Compost – NOTE: for plant materials, but be heated to at least 131°F (55°C) for at least 3 days. For compost containing animal and plant materials, must be heated to 131°-170°F for at least 15 days and must be turned 5 times.

Compost tea – NOTE: same restrictions as raw manure – “It may only be (i) applied to land used for a crop not intended for human consumption;(ii) incorporated into the soil not less than 120 days prior to the harvest of a product whose edible portion has direct contact with the soil surface or soil particles; or (iii) incorporated into the soil not less than 90 days prior to the harvest of a product whose edible portion does not have direct contact with the soil surface or soil particles.”

Cover crops

Rock minerals such as

  • High-calcium aglime
  • Dolomitic limestone
  • Rock phosphates
  • Gypsum
  • Sulfate of potash-magnesia
  • Mined potassium sulfate
  • Greensand or glauconite
  • Glacial gravel dust
  • Lava sand
  • Granite meal

Plant Pests and Diseases - Allowed 

Biological and microbial products such as

  • Bacilus thuringiensis(Able©, Bt©, Dipel©, Deliver©, Foray©)
  • Bacillus subtilis(Serenade©)
  • Beauveria bassiana (Mycotrol©)
  • Coniothyrium minitans(Contans©)
  • Myrothecium verrucaria(DiTera©)

Diatomaceous earth

Hydrogen Peroxide - for sanitizing or disinfecting

Insect Netting

Minerals such as

  • Elemental sulfur
  • Bicarbonate, potassium or sodium
  • Kaolin clay (Surround WP©)

Oils - narrow range petroleum, vegetable and fish oils are allowed for insect and pest control during the dormant and growing seasons

Pheromones and pheromone traps

Plant-derived substances such as

  • Neem
  • Pyrethrum
  • Caraway oil
  • Seed fennel
  • Corn gluten
  • Garlic
  • Quassia
  • Equisetum
  • Ryania

Row cover

Soaps (non-detergent) – Approved only for use on food crops (or equipment that come into contact with food crops) as a pesticide, fungicide, or algaecide. If used as herbicide, must be used only on non-food plants or around buildings, roadways, etc.

Streptomycin Sulfate and Tetracycline- only for fire blight in apples and pears

Sticky traps

Sulfur dioxide—underground rodent control only (smoke bombs)

Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol) – for rodent control

Weed Management and Miscellaneous - Allowed 

Mulch such as

  • Biodegradable plastic
  • Paper that is not glossy and does not have colored ink
  • Plastic mulch, so long as it is removed at the end of season
  • Straw, pine bark, wood chips and other plant based mulches that do not contain dyes or synthetic compounds

Paper pot transplanters

Plastic tarps, so long as they are removed at the end of season

Vinegar

Row cover and frost cloth

Weed barrier, so long as it is removed at end of season

NOTE for perennial growers: “In perennial cropping systems, plastic mulch, weed barriers or row covers may be left in the field beyond the harvest season; however, these inputs must be removed before the plastic decomposes or breaks into pieces so that it is not possible to effectively remove all pieces from the soil.”

Allowed Substances for Livestock

Livestock External Parasiticides - Allowed

Biologicals such as

  • Spinosad (NatularTM)

Botanicals such as

  • Pyrethrum (EquisectTM)

Essential oils such as

  • Citronella
  • Grapeseed
  • Jojoba
  • Lemongrass
  • Soybean oil

Livestock Feed Additives - Allowed

NOTE: these “may not be used in amounts above those needed for adequate nutrition and health maintenance at its specific stage in life. May not be used to stimulate growth or production.”

Diatomaceous earth

Fish meal

Kelp and seaweed meal

Minerals such as

  • Calcium
  • Carbon
  • Cobalt
  • Copper
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Manganese
  • Phosphate
  • Potassium
  • Sodium
  • Sulfur
  • Zinc

Probiotics -some products can be fed routinely, while others can only be administered in case of illness

Salt

Synthetic Phosphorous

Synthenic Selenium

Yeast

Yucca

Livestock Health - Allowed

Aspirin - to reduce inflammation

Colostrum/Whey Antibodies

Essential oils such as

  • Eucalyptus
  • Lemon
  • Oregano
  • Thymol

Glycerin – “must be produced through the hydrolysis of fats or oils.”

Iodine – topical

Mineral oil – topical

Oxytocin

Probiotics – NOTE: some products can be fed routinely, while others can only be administered in case of illness

Vaccines

Restricted Substances for Produce

Fertility and Soil Amendments – Restricted

High salt content fertilizers such as sodium nitrate (Chilean nitrate), potassium sulfate, potassium chloride: must have a plan to limit salt accumulation and prevent excessive runoff. 

Raw manure – Raw, or uncomposted manure, must be applied to the soil with adequate time before harvest of crops to make sure it breaks down entirely. This is 90 days where the edible portion of the crop does not come into contact with the soil (ie tree fruit, trellised tomatoes) and 120 days where the edible portion of the crop does come into contact with the soil (ie lettuce, carrots).

Synthetic micronutrients – use is permitted if there is a documented deficiency
NOTE: Micronutrients— may only be used for fertility, and there must be a documented deficiency in the form of a soil or tissue test. Micronutrients made from nitrates or chlorides are prohibited.

This applies to the following nutrients:

    • Soluble Boron products

    • Sulfates  of zinc, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, and cobalt.

    • Carbonates  of zinc, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, and cobalt.

    • Oxides  of zinc, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, and cobalt.

    • Silicates of zinc, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, and cobalt.

    • NOTES: 

      • Micronutrients— may only be used for fertility, and there must be a documented deficiency in the form of a soil or tissue test. 

      • Micronutrients made from nitrates or chlorides are prohibited.

      • If a grower does not have a documented deficiency, but still wants to add micronutrients to their soil, they can look into a CNG approved product, such as azomite.

Plant Pests and Diseases - Restricted Substances

General use of Plant Pest Products 

Approved plant pest products are allowed with the use of preventive, mechanical, physical, and other pest management practices, so that spraying is not the first and only line of defense. Some examples of pest management practices include: crop rotation, cultivating beneficial insect habitat, releasing beneficial insects trap cropping, pest monitoring, manual removal, and selecting pest resistant varieties, among others.

General use of Plant Disease Products

Approved plant disease products are allowed with the use of preventive, mechanical, physical, and other disease management practices, so that spraying is not the first and only line of defense. Some examples of disease management practices include: crop rotation, selecting disease resistant varieties, precision irrigation, pruning and trellising, manual removal, and crop diversification, among others.

  • Boric acid—Must not come into direct contact with food or crops

  • Copper – must be used in a manner that prevents accumulation in the soil

  • Soaps ‐non‐detergent only (such as a castille or insecticidal soap); for food crops only; as a pesticide, fungicide, or algaecide. 

    • NOTE: If used as herbicide, must be used only on non‐food plants or around buildings, roadways, etc. Cannot be used for disease control.

Weed Management and Miscellaneous - Restricted Substances

General use of Herbicide Products

Approved herbicide products are allowed with the use of preventive, mechanical, physical, and other weed management practices, so that spraying is not the first and only line of defense. Some examples of weed management practices include: cultivation, hand pulling, mowing, timely weeding, mulching, tarp occultation, and flame weeding, among others.

Herbicidal soaps – must not come into contact with crops, only for controlling weeds around buildings and roadways

 

Restricted Substances for Livestock

Atrophine - only by lawful written order of veterinarian and with a meat withdrawal period of 56 days for slaughter stock, and milk discard of 12 days for dairy

Butrophanol – only by lawful written order of veterinarian and with a meat withdrawal period of 56 days for slaughter stock and milk discard of 12 days for dairy.

Invermectin (for dairy stock and breeder stock) –only for emergency treatment, milk products from a treated animal may not be marketed as CNG for 90 days. For breeder stock, must not be used during the third trimester. It is prohibited for use on slaughter stock.

Poloxalene – only for emergency treatment of bloat.

Prohibited Substances for Produce

Fertility, Soil Amendments, and Potting Mixes - Prohibited Substances

Ash from manure burning

Chemically-processed minerals, including quick lime and sugar lime

Compost with sewage sludge

Glossy paper or paper with colored ink

Rockwool

Synthetic compost starter

Synthetic fertilizers such as

  • Ammoniacal nitrogen
  • Potassium Chloride
  • Synthetic nitrates
  • Synthetic phosphates
  • Urea and uric acid

Synthetic wetting agents

Plant Pests and Diseases - Prohibited Substances

Detergent-based soap products

Heavy metal or petroleum based pesticides

Nicotine sulfate and other tobacco products

Rotenote

Synthetic insecticides, fungicides, miticides such as

  • Allethrins
  • Metam Sodium
  • Neonicotinoids
  • Synthetic Pyrethoids

Synthetic wetting agents

Weed Management and Miscellaneous- Prohibited Substances

Heavy metal or petroleum based herbicides

Micronutrient-based herbicides

Paper mulch with glossy paper or paper with colored ink

Soap-based herbicides

Synthetic and DNA herbicides such as

  • 2,4-D
  • Atrazine
  • Dicamba
  • Glyphosate

Prohibited Substances for Livestock

Livestock External Parasiticides - Prohibited Substances

Parasiticides are prohibited 

Livestock Feed Additives - Prohibited Substances

Feed grown or treated with synthetic fertilizers or pesticides

Genetically modified feed or probiotics

Slaughter bi-products, urea and manure re-feeding

Livestock Health - Prohibited Substances

Antibiotics

Genetically modified probiotics

Ivermectin (for slaughter stock)

Most conventional veterinary medications 

Additional useful resources

-List of Vendors of Microbial and Botanical Insecticides and Insect Monitoring Devices, from the University of Kentucky, College of Agriculture: http://www.ca.uky.edu/entomology/entfacts/ef124.asp

-Efficacy of OMRI Approved Insecticides and Acaricides, by Corin Pease, Dept of Entomology, University of California, Davis: http://www.vineyardteam.org/files/resources/Corin%20Pease_Organic%20Alternatives.pdf

www.naturallygrown.org

 Published Oct 31, 2018