Reimbursement funds available for eligible organic growers and processors

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The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) is offering reimbursement to eligible organic growers and processors for up to 75 percent of their 2019 organic certification costs. The USDA’s National Organic Program is providing reimbursement funding that will be paid through the Organic Certification Cost Share Program (OCCSP).

Growers and processors who successfully completed organic certification from a USDA accredited organic certifying agency between October 1, 2018 and September 30, 2019 are eligible to apply for OCCSP reimbursement funding. OCCSP applications are due to VDACS no later than Dec. 1, 2019. Reimbursements are limited to a maximum of $750 per category of certification. Funds will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis until they are depleted.

The OCCSP application is available at www.vdacs.virginia.gov/pdf/organiccostshare.pdf. Applications should include a Commonwealth of Virginia W-9 tax form, a current copy of the applicant’s organic certificate from an accredited certification agency, and a dated, paid itemized invoice from the certification agency detailing total cost of services rendered.

Interested growers should who have questions about OCCSP reimbursement should call (804) 786-5931. General organic production information is available at www.vdacs.virginia.gov/sales-certified-organic.shtml.