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CERTIFIED ORGANIC SEED AT FEDCO

seeds organic seeds image Fedco Seeds is a certified organic processor under the National Organic Program. Our facilities are inspected by MOFGA Certification Services. Each variety labeled as organic in our catalog has been certified by a USDA-approved agency. By maintaining an audit trail and careful procedures we ensure that our cerified organic seed will not be contaminated.

If you buy organic seed because you are a certified grower, save your invoice from us and your packet labels so you can keep track of lot numbers to maintain your own audit trail.

Although the rule requires organic growers to use certified-organic seed whenever it is commercially available, in actual practice it still leaves a wide range of choices. Many ambiguities remain in the definition of “commercially available” and in what constitutes a good faith effort to locate organic seed. Consult your regional certifier for their specific seed requirements.

Organic growers have been using different compliance strategies. Some peruse a large number of different catalogs and purchase only organic seed no matter what the cost. Others stick to a few preferred suppliers, insist on certain favored varieties, or take quality into consideration.

Sustainably Grown Seed

All seed in our catalog offered as “certified organic” comes from certified farms. Even farms grossing under $5,000 that would otherwise be exempt from certification must get certified for us, as a processor, to label their product “certified organic.”

Believing it essential to the democracy and self-reliance of our agricultural community and to our integrity as a seed supplier, we have painstakingly built our network of small seed growers over the past twenty years. Most of our growers use farm and seed revenues to supplement income from other jobs. Only a minority gross over $5,000 farming.

Although most practice sustainable farming methods conscientiously, some eschew certification for a variety of reasons, ideological, economic and otherwise. In this catalog we are using the ecological label ECO after the variety name to describe uncertified seeds grown without pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilizers in gardens and on farms which maintain an active soil-building program. Often this seed is as sustainably grown as the certified organic seed. I hope you will continue to support these ECO growers with your purchases.

We use the label BD for those varieties certified biodynamically grown. Some varieties have both biodynamic and organic certification and so will have the symbol OG/BD.

Organics in the Catalog

Things you should know about ordering organic:

  • All organic catalog letters end with the letter ‘O.’ None of the conventional ones do.
  • Organic always costs the same or more than conventional.
  • If you change your mind between an organic and conventional selection of the same variety please change three things on your order: 1) the item number 2) the item letters 3) the price.

OG after cultivar name = entire lot is certified-organic seed. The certifying agency is listed in the copy. Abbreviations are:

AGRIOR an Israeli organic inspection agency
BSO Bay State Organic Certifiers (Massachusetts)
CCOF California Certified Organic Farmers
CO Colorado Department of Agriculture
GOA Global Organic Alliance
IA Iowa Department of Land Stewardship
ICS International Certification Services
ID Idaho Department of Agriculture
MCCO Monterey County (CA) Certified Organic
MD Maryland Department of Agriculture
MOFGA Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, MOFGA Certification Services, LLC
MOSA Midwest Organic Services Association
MT Montana Department of Agriculture
NOFA (followed by state chapter) Northeast Organic Farming Association
OCIA Organic Crop Improvement Association
OEFFA Ohio Ecological Farm & Food Association
OT Oregon Tilth
PA Pennsylvania Certified Organic
QCS Quality Certification Services (Florida)
SC South Carolina Department of Plant Industry
SKAL a Netherlands organic certifying agency
Stellar NOP the certifying arm of Demeter, the international agency certifying biodynamically grown crops.
VOF Vermont Organic Farmer
WA Washington State Department of Agriculture