US Associations filed a lawsuit against the Ministry of Agriculture, demanding to ban equating hydroponics with organic production


US Associations filed a lawsuit against the Ministry of Agriculture, demanding to ban equating hydroponics with organic production

03/10/2020

According to the plaintiffs, hydraponic systems violate production standards, where the foundation is healthy soil.

The Food Safety Center (CFS) and a coalition of organic producers filed a lawsuit against the US Department of Agriculture for equating hydroponic production with organic production.

At the moment, according to FruitNews, hydroponics manufacturers can obtain official organic production certificates. According to the plaintiffs, hydraponic systems violate production standards, where the foundation is healthy soil.

Farmers who filed the lawsuit include Swanton Berry Farm, Full Belly Farm, Durst Organic Growers, Terra Firma Farm, Jacobs Farm del Cabo and Long Wind Farm. In addition, OneCert (a certification company) and the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association joined in a class action lawsuit.

“The basis of organic farming is healthy soil. Producers of organic products and consumers believe that the Organic sign obliges not only to produce on the soil, but also to engage in its rehabilitation. Permitting the use of the mark to hydroponics manufacturers is against the idea, ”said CFS Executive Director Andrew Kimbrell.

A similar opinion is shared by the Russian National Organic Union.

“Today in the United States, hydroponics is already considered organic. This is contrary to the basic rules of IFOAM International, which states that the basis of organic production is land. Therefore, the main forces of organics in the United States – these are old farmers, a number of unions – have come forward with the initiative to cancel the decision of the American government to introduce hydroponics into organics. In Russia, hydroponics is not organic production and will never be, since we adhere to the rules of IFOAM International. The basis of organic production is only the soil, ”emphasized Oleg Mironenko, executive director of the National Organic Union.

The CFS lawsuit states that farmers are required to improve the soil and increase its fertility in order to obtain a certificate of organic farming. The hydroponic production system involves the use of nutrient solutions.

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