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USDA sets national organic standards parameters, for which Roulé Rouge meets all criteria

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

Wine Grapes

When we think of “organic” in the California wine industry, we immediately think in terms of table and wine grapes, versus other fruits and vegetables. This is only natural. Also, we find ourselves defining terms, like “organic,” “biodynamics,” and “sustainable” from what the California Certified Organic Farmers (COOF) decrees as acceptable definitions for our grapes, be they wine grapes or table grapes.

It’s the Untied States Department of Agriculture (USDA), however, that has set and continues to sets the standards for what’s acceptable as being “organic.”

From the USDA Website:

Organic Standards

The organic standards describe the specific requirements that must be verified by a USDA-accredited certifying agent before products can be labeled USDA organic. Overall, organic operations must demonstrate that they are protecting natural resources, conserving biodiversity, and using only approved substances…

Organic crops. The USDA organic seal verifies that irradiation, sewage sludge, synthetic fertilizers, prohibited pesticides, and genetically modified organisms were not used.

The regulatory process of the National Organic Program (NOP) develops ALL OF the laws that regulate creation, production, handling, labeling, trade, and enforcement of all USDA organic products. This process is commonly referred to as rulemaking, and involves input from the National Organic Standards Board. This is a Federal Advisory Committee made up of fifteen members of the public, and the public itself.

Organic Certification & Accreditation ~ Certification Versus Accreditation

  • Certification allows a farm or processing facility to sell, label, and represent their products as organic.
    • Certifying agents are accredited by the USDA, and are located throughout the United States and around the world.
    • Certifying agents are responsible for ensuring that the USDA organic products meet or exceed all organic standards.
  • Accreditation authorizes private, foreign, or State entities to certify farms or processing facilities.

Roulé Rouge is pleased to have received certification by the USDA and to have been accredited by the California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF), meeting all standards of excellence for organic wine grapes and wine.