The organic certifiers occupy a unique position in the organic food landscape. Through their certification services they provide the opportunity for businesses to trade their organic products. Certifiers have to ensure that their registered operators are compliant with the standards and that the inspection and certification system is robust, fair and thorough.
Certifiers also have a role in protecting genuine organic producers, and consumers of organic foods, from rogue traders and those with poor management practices that could lead to organic product becoming contaminated with prohibited substances. It is essential that in order to maintain the integrity of the organic certification system, and the public’s trust in that system, that the certifiers are not restricted in their actions, particularly when it comes to testing products for prohibited substances.
Defra are currently trying to limit the testing activity of the certifiers and whilst we recognise that testing is only a tool to use in some circumstances, it is an extremely useful tool and should not be restricted in any way.