Why Certified Organic? A few folks have been curious why we decided to get our produce certified organic and it's a great question I'll try to tackle here. We sell all our farm products directly to you, our customers, which means we're available to answer any questions you have about our farming practices. We've been at the Charlotte Farmers' Market for over ten years and had a CSA program in Asheville and Rutherford County for eight years and hope that we've earned your trust in regards to the health of the food we produce and our care for the land. Why go through the hassle of paperwork and inspections required for certification? There are two main reasons:
1. "Certified Organic" is a term that most people are familiar with and its standards are verified by a third party. There are a lot of other terms used at the farmers' market to describe various growing practices, like "no spray", "natural", and "pesticide free", but these claims mean different things to different people, and no one is checking to make sure the farmers is upholding their claims. "Certified Organic" requires that a farm follows the written National Organic Program rules andopens their farm to inspections. This takes a lot of the guess work out for market goers.
2. Organic products have become a big industry, but the initial push for an organic certification process came from small, organic farmers in the 1960s and 70s. We believe that in order to maintain the spirit and high standards of "Organic" there need to be a lot more small farmers getting certified and providing input to the Organic Standards Board. There are so many farmers like us who are inspired to farm, not for the big business potential, but for the ideals of stewardship, health, biodiversity and productivity. We hope these ideals remain strong in the Organic Standards for years to come!