The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) published the National Organic Program: Strengthening Organic Enforcement proposed rule in the Federal Register. This begins the 60-day comment period on the rule. Comments are due October 5th, 2020.

Previously, AMS released a pre-publication version of the rule. The rule proposes amending the USDA organic regulations with the intent to strengthen oversight and enforcement of the production, handling, and sale of organic agricultural products.

Topics addressed in this proposed rule include: applicability of the regulations and exemptions from organic certification; National Organic Program Import Certificates; record keeping and product traceability; certifying agent personnel qualifications and training; standardized certificates of organic operation; unannounced on-site inspections of certified operations; oversight of certification activities; foreign conformity assessment systems; certification of grower group operations; labeling of non-retail containers; annual update requirements for certified operations; compliance and appeals processes; and calculating organic content of multi-ingredient products.

The comment docket is available here.