UNITY — MOFGA (Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association) Certification Services is accepting applications for organic certification from crop and livestock producers until June 1.
Adult use and medical cannabis producers interested in certification can apply to the MOFGA Certified Clean Cannabis program through June 30. Application materials and supporting documents can be downloaded at mofgacertification.org and also are available by calling 207-568-6030.
Nationwide interest in certified organic products continues to grow. A recent study from the Organic Produce Network showed 12.7% growth in organic produce sales in the northeast region in 2020.
“The pandemic has exposed the need for resilient local food systems and at the same time consumers are turning to certified organic products more than ever before,” said Chris Grigsby, director of MOFGA Certification Services, according to a news release from the association. “The MOFGA certified organic label represents the local organic choice for consumers in Maine and the Northeast. We are hopeful that more farms will recognize this extended trend and transition to and seek organic certification each year to meet this demand.”
In 2020 there were more than 69,000 acres farmed organically in Maine, and MOFGA’s organizational goal is to grow that number to 130,000 by 2030 to meet increased consumer demand with organic products grown and produced in Maine.
Interested producers who have questions about transitioning to organic production or the certification process can connect with a member of MOFGA’s farmer programs staff for answers and advice. Additional marketing support for certified organic producers is available through MOFGA via farm profiles, branded packaging and signage, and producer directories to help consumers find local organic products. Jill Agnew of Willow Pond Farm in Sabattus noted that the searchable farm map on MOFGA’s website helped many new customers find her farm stand last March.
Producers interested in certification and individuals looking for local organic producers can find more information at mofga.org.