Livestock FAQs

Can I certify some but not all the livestock on my farm? Yes, just be clear on your application about which animals you're wanting to get certified, and which will be excluded from certification. You will need to submit a feed declaration for each type of livestock for which you seek certification, and for each of your feed suppliers. 

Will my non-GMO feed meet CNG requirements? It is not sufficient for the feed to be non-GMO. That's important, but the feed ALSO must be grown without synthetic fertilizers, herbicides, or pesticides. If your feed is marketed as non-GMO, but not certified organic, then it very likely is grown with synthetic inputs.

How can I tell if my feed qualifies? If your feed is certified organic, then it meets CNG standards. If your livestock are pasture-raised and don't receive supplemental feed then you're probably good to go, so long as you don't add synthetic fertilizers to your own fields! If you buy from a local supplier, we recommend you show them the CNG Feed Declaration (required of all CNG livestock producers) and see if they can affirm those requirements are met. If you are having difficulty locating feed that meets CNG standards, you might get some leads from this preliminary list of feed suppliers.

What if one of my animals gets sick? Most conventional veterinary medicines are not allowed under CNG standards (vaccines are an important exception). When necessary to prevent animal suffering and death, CNG requires producers to use the most effective veterinary treatment available –whether synthetic or natural. Preserving certification status is not an acceptable reason to withhold needed medical treatment. However, if synthetic treatments are used, the animal cannot be marketed as CNG and should be removed from the flock or herd.

Is there a pasture requirement? All animals must have access to the outdoors, as well as shade, shelter, fresh air, and direct sunlight, except in cases of inclement weather. In particular, ruminants should spend most of their time on pasture for 120 days or more during the growing season. 

What are the minimum housing or space requirements for poultry? Poultry must have at least 5 square feet per bird of free-roaming space outdoors, or 2 square feet per bird if poultry is penned and is moved once to fresh pasture. When kept indoors overnight or during extreme weather, they should have at least 1.75 square feet per bird.