Organic Rules and Certification

Seed and plant material, origin - US NOP 2002

Huber, Beate (2006) Seed and plant material, origin - US NOP 2002. [Organic rules - Differences between other regulations/standards and EEC No 2092/91]

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The producer must use organically grown seeds, annual seedlings, and planting stock: Exceptions: In case equivalent organically produced varieties are not commercially available the following is allowed: (1) Non-organically produced, untreated seeds and planting stock; (2) Non-organically produced seeds and planting stock that have been treated with a substance included on the "National list of synthetic substances allowed for use in organic crop production". (3) Non-organically produced annual seedlings may be used when a temporary variance has been granted; (4) Non-organically produced planting stock to be used to produce a perennial crop only after the planting stock has been maintained under a system of organic management for a period of no less than 1 year; and (5) Products treated with prohibited substances may be used when the application of the materials is a requirement of Federal or State phytosanitary regulations. Organically produced seed must be used for the production of edible sprouts.


The EU Regulation 2092/91 requires the EU Member States to set up a database on the availability of seed varieties and seedlings. The US does not have an equivalent database. The EU specifies in Regulation (EG) 1452/2003 the conditions for authorizations for use of conventional seeds. The US does not. The EU aims at publishing a list of seeds and propagation material where no authorizations may be granted. The US does not mention this. EU does not allow using conventional seedlings. US do when a temporary variance has been granted. US specifically require organic seeds for edible sprouts; EU does not. US allows treatment of propagation materials with prohibited substances when mandated by phytosanitary regulations. EU does not contain such a provision.


There was no official justification provided by USDA.

EU Regulation

Annex I. Principles of organic production and processing > A.Plant and plant products > Seeds and seedlings - see Art. 6a
Rules of production and preparation - Art.6

Item type:Organic rules - Differences between other regulations/standards and EEC No 2092/91
Subjects:Crop production > Seed production /Seedlings
Principles:Ecological principle
Principle of health
ID Code:793
Deposited On:15 Mar 2006
Last Modified:16 Apr 2010 13:00

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