This Month Only: Free Gifts with Twist Ties!

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator
Certified Naturally Grown
We're celebrating June and all the fresh bounty it brings with an epic sale on our twist ties!

When you order twist ties in June, you'll receive a FREE sign and FREE bumper sticker!

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Spring News from Your Grassroots Certification: 46 New CNG Farms & More!

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator
Certified Naturally Grown
Spring is springing at Certified Naturally Grown! We're celebrating 46 newly certified farmers and beekeepers joining the CNG community this growing season! Check the list below to see if a farmer you know is among them. Plus, we have brand new training videos, new Business Allies, and a blog bursting with fresh information.

Organic Arugula

The Harvest Quarterly is our seasonal newsletter, delivered every few months. Enjoy it while it's fresh! Not yet subscribed? Sign up here.
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Top Tips for Microgreens


Certified Naturally Grown Microgreens

Do your Microgreens Make the Cut?

We've developed a handy checklist to help you determine if CNG is a good fit for you. 



"Microgreens" is a marketing term used to describe edible greens that germinate from the seeds of herbs and vegetables and are harvested without roots when they are seedlings. These flavorful cotyledons make a great addition to many meals and pack a real nutritional punch.

Microgreens are on the rise...literally!

Not only are these tiny vegetables trendy, but they also grow fast (they're often ready for harvest in about two weeks!), and can be sold at a premium. This makes them a great option for a wide variety of growing operations.

Just because these greens are little doesn't mean they go unchecked! Keep reading to make sure you're up to snuff on your Certified Naturally Grown standards for microgreens.

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Banner Greenhouses Helps Certified Naturally Grown Grow!

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator

North Carolina Organic Vegetable Seedlings
CNG peppers, tomatoes, flowers, lettuce, kale and more at Banner Greenhouses 

Banner Greenhouses isn't just certified by Certified Naturally Grown, but they're a Business Ally of CNG, too!

This Nebo, North Carolina business is the definition of #CNGproud. They have over 19 acres in production, each bursting with vegetable, herb, and flower transplants. Banner Greenhouses may be in the business of tiny plant "plugs," but these millions of plugs make a big impact - especially when they're grown under Certified Naturally Grown standards that work in harmony with the nature.

We are proud to have such a strong connection with this enthusiastic Business Ally!

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CNG 101: All Videos Are Live!

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator

In early 2019, we announced a brand new video resource called CNG 101. CNG 101 is a series of lessons that cover the basics of meeting Certified Naturally Grown production standards for produce operations. Our educational videos are available online, on demand, and free of charge.

Today, we are proud to share that all eight CNG 101 videos are now live!

Click here to access CNG 101 training videos!

Our fresh trainings cover the following topics:
  • Soil Management

  • Weed Management

  • Vegetable Pest Management

  • Vegetable Disease Management

  • Seeds, Planting Stock, and Variety Selection

  • Environmental Protections and Preventing Contaminants

  • Crop Rotation

  • Cover Crops

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Moscow Food Co-op Helps Certified Naturally Grown Grow!

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator

Alternative Organic Co-op Giant Pumpkin
Mary and the Giant Pumpkin

Moscow Food Co-op is not only part of our Guide to Exceptional Markets (GEMs), but they're a Business Ally of CNG, too! 

This Idaho co-op is a GEM because they clearly indicate which vendors or products are CNG-certified in its 46 year-old organization. If you're a local shopper, you'll notice CNG stickers on produce grown by local CNG farms!

We are really looking forward to having a presence at Moscow Food Co-op's annual Farmer Mixer this fall, where the co-op's farmer vendors are invited to come together and learn from one another.

As a Business Ally, Moscow Food Co-op has made a financial contribution to our grassroots organization to help keep CNG affordable for direct-market farmers. 

We wish we lived closer so we could swing by their exceptional deli hot food bar daily for lunch! Meantime, we spoke with Moscow Food Co-op's Market Manager, Alycia Rock, to learn about the co-op's rich history and how CNG makes a difference for both its vendors and eaters.

We are proud to have such a strong connection with this Exceptional Market!

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Hot Off The Press: Our Latest Newsletter About Certified Naturally Grown Farmers

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator

CNG Alternative Organic Certification Newsletter 2

We're proud to announce that we just sent out the second edition of our print newsletter, Growing Above and Beyond! Read on for a sneak peek of the articles, and learn how to snag your very own copy.

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Dispelling Myths about Transitional Status

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator

Rose Creek Grass Fed Cattle
The Pastures of Rose Creek, Watkinsville, GA

Here at Certified Naturally Grown, we’re different than other certifying bodies in quite a few ways. Not only do we use a peer-review approach for our grassroots certification, but we also have a different perspective on Transitional Status for farms where synthetic inputs may have been used in the past. 

With Certified Naturally Grown, farmers don’t have to wait three full years after the last known use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, or prohibited beekeeping treatments before applying to Certified Naturally Grown.

As soon as a farmer or beekeeper is able to commit to CNG standards, they can pursue certification.

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AgSquared Helps Certified Naturally Grown Grow!

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator

AgSquared Organic Farm Software

AgSquared is a farm management software company created by researchers who have dedicated their careers to making it easier to run a farm well.

Founders Jeff and Giulia were ahead of their time when their platform launched in 2011: they were working in cloud-based technology well before our tech lives all migrated up into the sky!

Since then, it's become an invaluable tool for farms all over the country. We spoke with co-founder Jeff Froikin-Gordon to learn what's new at AgSquared, how their tool helps CNG farms stay organized, and what's on the horizon for this multi-faceted platform.

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Maple Producers of Certified Naturally Grown

By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator

Missouri Maple
Hart|Beet Farm, Eolia, MO

This time of year, we're celebrating maple sugaring season! Peaceful sugar bushes, a roaring fire, billowing steam. Plastic tubing, and the aroma of maple wafting through the air. At the end of it all: a perfect topping for a stack of pillowy pancakes.

Maple sap flows freely when temperatures are above freezing during the day, and below freezing at night. This usually takes place from the months of February through April throughout the Northeast down south to Tennessee and on west to Minnesota. Homesteaders, outdoor enthusiasts, farmers, and waffle aficionados alike can all get involved to savor this sweet process that comes with the changing seasons. 

Did you know Certified Naturally Grown certifies maple as part of our Produce Certification? Just like our other certifications, we require that maple producers use absolutely no synthetic chemicals in production. But we also ensure that maple producers are using the best practices to preserve the health of the trees.

For instance, producers must use taps that are no larger than 5/16" in diameter. They must also minimize the number of taps based on the circumference of the tree to avoid stunting future growth. Additionally, sap harvested from this wild crop must not come from trees surrounded by all-too-common dumps in the woods, or abandoned cars that are leaking oil.

You can learn more specifics about our maple requirements on our supplemental inspection form for maple producers.

Certifying your maple can help you gain access to better markets, earning your hard work a spot on shelves of local grocers and co-ops, for example. 

Read on to learn about some of our Certified Naturally Grown maple producers. Just like produce or livestock operations around the country, there's room for all at the sticky maple syrup table.

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