Reimbursement Funds Available Now For Organic Certification

881912_66828313The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) has announced that funds are now available for organic growers in Virginia to apply for partial reimbursement to offset their organic certification costs. Organic growers who were certified between October 1, 2009 and September 30, 2010 are eligible to apply for cost share funds through a program offered by VDACS.

The 2008 Federal Farm Bill allows for reimbursement of 75 percent of the cost of organic certification, up to a total of $750 per applicant. Reimbursement funds were issued in 2009 and are again available on a first come, first served basis.

To apply, growers must complete the Virginia Organic Certification Cost Share Application Form available at www.virgniagrown.com. Click on the USDA Organic Cost Share Program to get to the application. The form must accompany a current copy of the producer’s organic certificate from a USDA accredited Certifying Agency, a copy of the dated, paid invoice form the certifier showing the total cost of services rendered and a W-9 form, a copy of which is available on the VDACS organic site. The form and documents should be returned to the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services by November 1, 2010. VDACS encourages producers to apply early while funds are available.

Producers with questions should contact Kent Lewis at kent.lewis@vdacs.virginia.gov or call 804.786.3951.