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NOP Allowance of Green Waste

(April 23, 2010) OMRI has previously announced that three composts had been prohibited by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) and the National Organic Program (NOP) for use on any organic farm certified to the NOP standards: Nortech Gold made by Nortech Waste LLC, Grover Wonder Grow Compost made by Grover Landscape Services, and Clean City Compost made by Feather River Organics.

On April 19, 2010 the NOP released a directive entitled “The Allowance of Green Waste in Organic Production Systems.” This directive states, in part, that "Green waste and green waste compost that is produced from approved feedstocks, such as, non-organic crop residues or lawn clippings may contain pesticide residues. Provided that the green waste and green waste compost (i) is not subject to any direct application or use of prohibited substances (i.e. synthetic pesticides) during the composting process, and (ii) that any residual pesticide levels do not contribute to the contamination of crops, soil or water, the compost is acceptable for use in organic production."

As a result, the CDFA released an announcement on April 21, 2010 stating that the prohibition of the three above named composts has been rescinded. Please see the following link for more information


The products Grover Wonder Grow Compost made by Grover Landscape Services, and Clean City Compost made by Feather River Organics have remained OMRI Listed during the assessment of green waste composts and continue to be listed.

OMRI and other interested parties had submitted comments to the NOP regarding the development of this policy. OMRI had tested a number of products on the OMRI List to determine how widespread of a problem this is among composts and provided this information to the NOP to aid in their decision making. OMRI welcomes the recent NOP clarification and resolution of this issue which will aid OMRI, certifiers, and growers in verifying compliance of input materials for organic farms.