They’re Back … The 10,000 Pound Gorilla in “Organic” Imports

June 26th, 2018

Turkey’s Tiryaki and Diasub appear to be back in the U.S. market with a new certifier

Tiryaki Agro Gida Sanayi v Ticaret A.S. (“Tiryaki”), a multibillion dollar agribusiness giant, and its wholly owned organic division, Diasub, FZE, now appear to be officially back in the organic grain imports market with a new USDA accredited certifier.

Tiryaki and Diasub surrendered their certifications to their previous certifier, EcoCert, SA. Diasub surrendered its certification most recently on May 15, 2018.  An anonymous industry participant has provided Cornucopia with what appears to be new organic certificates issued to Tiryaki and Diasub by Control Union Certifications.  Tiryaki’s organic certificate is effective May 28, 2018 and Diasub’s is effective June 1, 2018.

We have contacted Control Union requesting confirmation and copies of Tiryaki’s and Diasub’s certificates. Even though the certifier is obligated, under federal law, to supply these, they have yet to respond.

At the time of this writing, the USDA National Organic Program’s Integrity Database, which houses information related to certified operations, continues to show Tiryaki and Diasub as uncertified companies having surrendered their organic certifications. The database indicates that the NOP last updated Diasub’s status on June 19, 2018 and Tiryaki’s on June 26, 2018.

The timing of Diasub’s surrender to Ecocert is curious, given its close proximity to U.S. governmental authorities’ rejection of the massive “organic” corn cargo that was carried aboard the United Kingdom-flagged Mountpark, just weeks earlier.  Diasub shipped the 25,000 metric ton shipment to Tiryaki affiliate, Sunrise Foods International, a Canadian-based company.

Diasub’s surrender also coincides with the surrender of organic certificates previously held by several Tiryaki-affiliated farms, including those in Russia and Ukraine from which the corn carried aboard the Mountpark was harvested.

Cornucopia informed the public of a lawsuit brought by Sunrise International involving the Mountpark shipment and recently issued a comprehensive report chronicling how failed USDA-NOP enforcement and ineffective regulations led to the influx of questionable organic grain imports into the United States.

According to the National Organic Program records, Control Union, based in the Netherlands, certifies more than 2,000 operations worldwide.  The company states it has “boots on the ground” in more than 70 countries.

Cornucopia will continue to follow the story.

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