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Financial Assistance Available for Organic Certification





        FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 23, 2016

Media Contact: Jody Heemstra, 605.773.4073


***This release contains a link to audio.***


Financial Assistance Available for Organic Certification


PIERRE, S.D .- Organic agriculture producers and processors in South Dakota processors have until Nov. 15, 2016, to apply for a rebate of up to 75 percent of the cost of their organic certification.


Producers may be eligible to receive reimbursement on multiple scopes within each operation. National Organic Program certification is required. Reimbursement can be for up to 75 percent of the cost, not to exceed $750, per scope.


“The annual cost of organic certification varies from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars for both new and established organic producers,” said Kimberly DeSchepper, South Dakota Department of Agriculture grant and loan specialist. “Applications for the reimbursements should be submitted after the certification process is complete and all fees have been paid.” (***Download DeSchepper audio here***)


Proof of certification and certification fees paid must be submitted with your application. Applications and supporting documents must be sent to SDDA for eligible certification or re-certification expenses incurred after Oct.1, 2015, and before Sept. 30, 2016.  All applications will be reviewed and processed on a first-come, first-served basis. The deadline for submissions is Nov. 15, 2016.


Funding for the program is provided through a cooperative agreement between SDDA and the Agricultural Marketing Service branch of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.


Grant information and an application are available at http://sdda.sd.gov/grants/national-organic-program-grant/. For more information, call DeSchepper at 605.773.4516.


Agriculture is a major contributor to South Dakota’s economy, generating $25.6 billion in annual economic activity and employing over 115,000 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture's mission is to promote, protect and preserve this industry for today and tomorrow. Visit us online at http://sdda.sd.gov or find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.