402.477.2323 info@ocia.org

LINCOLN, NE:  One of the few member-owned organic certifiers held its annual meeting in Texas for the first time, from Feb. 5 to Feb. 7, 2014.

The Organic Crop Improvement Association (OCIA), an international organic certifier, convened its Annual General Membership Meeting with 63 delegates, representing more than 1,000 operations across the Americas at San Antonio, Texas. Kevin Koester, OCIA president and meeting chair, asked delegates to introduce themselves and talk about their reason for being certified organic. Most were producers who said the top two reasons they certified were economic and to produce healthy food. When asked why they certified with OCIA, the top two responses were networking and support from chapters.

Several delegates said OCIA’s future was at its roots, as a network of family farmers. New emphasis will be placed in 2014 maintaining and developing OCIA’s member chapters. The United Nations declared 2014 the international year of family farming. Check back at the OCIA website for monthly member spotlights on OCIA’s family of farmers, processors, apiaries and more. February’s spotlight was Bernard and Sharon Kavan, from near Linwood, Neb. The Kavans were also recipients of OCIA Research and Education’s Outstanding Organic Farmer of 2014 award.

Members elect a board of directors at the meeting. They re-elected Steve Elliott from Ohio, Jack Geiger from Eastern Kansas, Demetria Stephens from Western Kansas and elected a new member to the board; Susan Linkletter, from New Brunswick. See the full list of Board of Directors. Koester kept his seat as president in the election of officers for the 2014 board.

Mark Kastel, co-founder and senior farm policy Analyst at The Cornucopia Institute, got a standing ovation after his talk on maintaining organics’ integrity at the meeting Thursday afternoon. He said the gesture reminded him of the spirit of a farmers union convention where its members said they were concerned about neighbors going out of business, roads crumbling and not being able to take care of elderly people in the area.

“And so it was about us,” he said. “I’ve always thought that OCIA, and that’s why I’m proud to be here, was about the organic movement.”

Kastel said his operation was certified by OCIA in 1989 or 1990, shortly after OCIA was incorporated, in 1988.

OCIA’s next AGMM will be at Council Bluffs, Iowa in February 2015. 

For more information send us an e-mail at info@ocia.org or give us a call at 1-402-477-23231-402-477-2323.


OCIA is a not-for-profit organic certification agency that has offered a wide variety of accreditations to our members throughout the world for over 25 years.  During an annual meeting, approximately 100 organic farmers from the United States, Canada and Latin America come together to meet and vote on the Bylaws, Standards and Board of Directors for this member-run organization.


Date Published:  March 10th, 2014
Author/Title:  Demetria Stephens, OCIA International Board Member
E-Mail:  sandnuri@gmail.com
Address:  OCIA, 1340 N. Cotner Blvd, Lincoln, NE, 68505

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Thank you for submitting your organic certification application! OCIA looks forward to working with you.

For applicants who are new or currently under suspension, please see the end of the page for some important notes.

An estimate for your 2023 certification and inspection fees was sent with the login information. Please promptly send payment to the address on the invoice. If you are a new applicant, OCIA will not review your file until payment is received.

If you are submitting hardcopies of any supporting documents, please mail them to the address on the invoice. Failure to submit required supporting documents may lead to delays in the review.

Once a complete file is received, OCIA will complete a pre-inspection review. During this process, OCIA will contact you if additional information is needed. Please respond to any communication from OCIA in a timely manner.

Please contact OCIA International if you have any questions.

New applicants: Please be reminded that as a new applicant, your operation currently cannot label or sell product as organic. If organic certification is granted, an organic certificate will be issued and product can then be sold as organic.

For farm operations, the inspector must see your crop in the field, so check-strips must be left in all fields requested for certification if any harvest occurs prior to inspection. For hay fields, any hay harvested prior to inspection cannot be certified as organic.

For suspended operations: Please be aware that no product can be sold as “organic” while suspended and previous product is no longer “organic.” For farm operations, any crops currently in storage are no longer organic and must be sold conventionally. Only crops harvested after reinstatement, if it is granted, may be sold as “organic.” Any crops harvested from fields prior to reinstatement must be sold conventionally.

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¡Gracias por enviar su solicitud de certificación orgánica! OCIA espera trabajar con usted. Para los solicitantes que son nuevos o están actualmente suspendidos, consulte el final de la página para conocer información importante.

Se le envió un estimado de los honorarios de certificación e inspección 2023 con la información de inicio de sesión. Envíe puntualmente el pago a la dirección que figura en la factura. Si usted es un nuevo solicitante, OCIA no revisará su expediente hasta que se reciba el pago.

Si envía copias impresas de cualquier documento de respaldo, envíelas por correo a la dirección que figura en la factura. Se podrá producir demoras en la revisión si no se envían los documentos de respaldo necesarios,.

Una vez que se recibe un expediente completo, OCIA llevará a cabo una revisión de preinspección. Durante este proceso, OCIA se comunicará con usted si necesita información adicional. Responda a cualquier comunicación de OCIA de manera oportuna.

Póngase en contacto con OCIA International si tiene alguna pregunta.

Para los solicitantes nuevos: recuerde que, como solicitante nuevo, su operación actualmente no puede etiquetar o vender productos como orgánicos. Si se otorga la certificación orgánica, se emitirá un certificado orgánico y el producto se podrá vender como orgánico.

Para las operaciones agrícolas, el inspector debe ver su cultivo en el campo, por lo que si se produce alguna cosecha antes de la inspección, se deben dejar franjas o surcos de verificación en todos los campos solicitados para la certificación. Para los campos de heno, cualquier heno cosechado antes de la inspección no puede certificarse como orgánico.

Para operaciones suspendidas: tenga en cuenta que ningún producto puede venderse como "orgánico" mientras está suspendido y que el producto anterior ya no es "orgánico". Para las operaciones agrícolas, cualquier cultivo actualmente almacenado ya no es orgánico y debe venderse de manera convencional. Solo los cultivos cosechados después del restablecimiento, si se otorga, pueden venderse como "orgánicos". Cualquier cultivo cosechado de los campos antes de la reinstalación debe venderse de manera convencional ".

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