The NOP Organic Insider, USDA National Organic Program

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AnnouncementAugust 9, 2011

Due to a severe drought, the USDA is granting ruminant livestock producers in specific areas of Colorado with a temporary variance. The variance involves the sections of the USDA organic regulations that address dry matter intake from pasture grazing: 205.237(c) and 205.240. The variance will last through the 2011 grazing season and apply to producers using non-irrigated pasture in the following Colorado counties:

  • Bent
  • Chaffee
  • Custer
  • Fremont
  • Huerfano
  • Kiowa
  • Las Animas
  • Prowers
  • Pueblo

Producers having access to irrigated pasture are not included in the variance. View Letter


About Temporary Variances

Temporary variances from the production and handling requirements of the USDA organic regulations may be granted by the Agricultural Marketing Service Administrator for the following reasons:

  • Natural disasters declared by the Secretary
  • Damage caused by severe weather or other business interruption, 
  • Practices used for the purpose of conducting research in organic production or handling.

Procedures for requesting temporary variances are described in NOP 2606: Processing Requests for Temporary Variances. 7 CFR Section 205.290 provides the full regulatory text regarding temporary variances.

About the National Organic Program (NOP)
The NOP facilitates trade and ensures integrity of organic agricultural products by consistently implementing organic standards and enforcing compliance with the regulations throughout the world. Learn more.
About the NOP Organic Insider
The NOP Organic Insider is intended to inform the organic community on a wide range of NOP functions, including organic standards, accreditation and international activities, compliance and enforcement, the National Organic Standards Board, training events, and the Cost Share program.  


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