On this episode we welcome Quality Certification Services (QCS) staff to talk about Organic Certification during the COVID19 pandemic. Our panelists are Beth Rota, policy and quality assurance manager, Brian Rakita, inspection manager, and Ram, CEO of QCS.
Ram shares with us that the agricultural sector is holding strong, with some operations even doubling sales since the lock-down started. He also shares his work linking small and medium producers to buyers, improving the distribution system that currently mostly benefits large scale producers.
Beth, a member of Accredited Certifiers Association, tells how different certifying bodies are working together to come up with a document that outlines best practices to ensure the integrity of the organic label during these difficult times. You can contact Beth about different certifying bodies' efforts to maintain integrity of the organic label at email@example.com.
Brian shares how inspectors have had to adapt to online inspections to maintain the robust USDA organic label. You can contact Brian about remote, online inspections at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have issues with your operation or would like to learn more about resources available to you, please email email@example.com with your questions. Information can also be found on our website foginfo.org under Florida Farmers Market Association (FFMA) tab. Newsletter and weekly updates provide resources for producers.
Fresh Take is your weekly dose of all things related to organic and sustainable living. Join Florida Organic Growers staff and guest experts as we discuss everything you need to know about sustainable living, organic agriculture, and how to make the best lifestyle choices that benefit you and the environment. So, if you’re an eco-warrior, a dedicated farmer, or just someone looking to make more conscious decisions, tune in every Monday to get your Fresh Take.
Florida Certified Organic Growers and Consumers, Inc. (FOG) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit established in 1987 as a grassroots organization, formed by those who believe in organic, sustainable, and regenerative agriculture. Our vision is to create a more sustainable and just food system that benefits both consumers and the environment.
Quality Certification Services (QCS) has been an industry leader in providing organic, food safety, and ethical certifications since 1989. As an accredited certifying agency, QCS has been meeting the demands of a growing food industry for more than 30 years. QCS is proud to offer organic and food safety certification for crop production, livestock, retail, restaurants, processing and handling, and importer and exporter operations of all sizes. As the largest US-based certification agency on the eastern seaboard, QCS and our staff of highly qualified and dedicated food and agricultural scientists, educators, and regulators, is capable of meeting all certification needs with expertise.