Last Updated: April 26 at 7:58PM CT
Join The Cornucopia Institute as we live tweet from the National Organic Standards Board meeting in Tucson, Arizona. We will be sharing the play by play with our Twitter followers under #NOSB or simply follow our stream.
For background on issues up for discussion at the meeting, see:
- Cornucopia’s formal written comments on regulating organic imports, emergency use of parasiticides, and preserving native ecosystems
- A scorecard rating NOSB member voting records on contentious organic issues
You can also stay updated throughout the meeting right here:
Thursday, April 26, 2018
7:58PM CT: Discussing Full Supply Chain Audits, Mortensen says he got a sense that full supply chain audits are critical, as well as challenging. Behar says it’s a new area where there is a need for training.
Tucker (NOP) suggests they find a pilot study that is small enough to know how to apply it. She agrees that this is new territory. Mortensen notes that this is where models would be helpful. He says he was impressed with what Pipeline was sharing and what they have put in place for their own chain.
Baird agrees this is an inspector education issue and says that we are instructed as inspectors to do an audit in four hours–and that’s a problem. Knows that entities shop based on pricing, so there has got to be education for certified entities and cooperation, as much as possible, between certifiers. It’s a business.
7:49PM CT: The use of additional import fraud controls was also discussed. NOP staffer Tucker said we’ve learned more about CBP’s [Custom and Border Patrol] ability to stop or hold a product. The stop import would require very high evidence. The question is, is it fair to stop sale if it can be sold as conventional? They are two different things: stopping sale vs. stopping sale as organic. We are more interested in getting an operation’s certification revoked or suspended, with civil penalties used more often for uncertified operations.
Chapman asks her how can you make a civil penalty more effective. Tucker says this is worth more discussion and research and is outside her knowledge area if she speculates.
7:38PM CT: The issue of fumigation and imports was also discussed. Tucker says we receive fumigation notices from APHIS [Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service]. But we don’t know if the shipment was actually fumigated, and the rules are incredibly nuanced with lots of different mitigation approaches. We are still learning and trying to get arms around the nuances. Read Full Article »