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Spring 2017 NOSB Meeting

The Spring 2017 National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) meeting was held April 19-21 at the Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel in Denver, CO. 

Read OTA's Full NOSB Report

The primary purpose of NOSB meetings is to provide an opportunity for organic stakeholders to give input on proposed NOSB recommendations and discussion items. The meetings also allow NOSB to receive updates from USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) on issues pertaining to organic agriculture.

OTA's Final Comments

In addition to providing oral comment during the scheduled webinar and at the in-person meeting, OTA submitted the following written comments to NOSB:

Handling Subcommittee

Livestock Subcommittee

Certification, Accreditation and Compliance Subcommittee

Crops Subcommittee


The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) is in the process of reviewing several of the fertilizers, pest control products, livestock treatments, processing aids, and ingredients currently allowed for use by certified organic operations. It’s critical that NOSB hear from certified farmers and handlers prior to the Spring 2017 NOSB meeting on whether these inputs are essential and/or necessary for organic production, or whether there are other effective natural or organic alternatives available. 

To help facilitate a robust comment process, OTA has created a survey system for collecting feedback from certified farms and processors. Below are links to electronic surveys that can be used to submit feedback on each individual input currently under NOSB review. Each survey is CONFIDENTIAL, and contains about 10 short questions that will take an estimated five minutes to complete. 


IMPORTANT! NOSB will be VOTING on the 2019 Sunset inputs at the fall 2017 meeting. Feedback is given to NOSB during this meeting to help inform NOSB’s vote at the fall 2017 meeting and will ultimately help decide whether or not the inputs will continue to be allowed in organic production and processing.

Mission and Structure of NOSB

The National Organic Standards Board was created through the Organic Foods Production Act, a sub-section of the 1990 Farm Bill. The Board is charged with the task of assisting the Secretary of Agriculture on which substances should be allowed or prohibited in organic farming and processing. This 15-person citizen advisory board brings together volunteers from around the United States. It is made up of four farmers/growers, two handlers/processors, one retailer, one scientist, three consumer/public interest advocates, three environmentalists, and one USDA accredited certifying agent. 

Gwendolyn Wyard
Vice President of Regulatory and Technical Affairs
(503) 798-3294