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State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Pennsylvania > Title-3 > Chapter-57

CHAPTER 57 FOOD PROTECTION (Reserved) Enactment. Chapter 57 (Reserved) was added December 12, 1994, P.L.903, No.131, effective in 60 days. CHAPTER 59 ORGANIC FOODS Sec. 5901. Short title of chapter. 5902. Declaration of policy. 5903. Definitions. 5904. Organic certification. 5905. Crop production practices and materials. 5906. Animal production practices and materials. 5907. Producer statement. 5908. Rules and regulations. 5909. Violations. Enactment. Chapter 59 was added December 12, 1994, P.L.903, No.131, effective in 60 days. § 5901. Short title of chapter. This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the Organic Food Products Standards Act. § 5902. Declaration of policy. The General Assembly finds and declares as follows: (1) A public benefit will be achieved by establishing standards for agricultural products marketed, labeled and advertised using the term "organic" or a derivative of the term "organic." Standards facilitate the development of intrastate and interstate markets for organically produced agricultural products by providing a clear, uniform definition for farmers, food processors, food distributors and consumers alike. (2) It is intended that private certifying agents be recognized by the department to determine whether food products marketed, labeled and advertised as organic conform to standards set forth in the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-624, 104 Stat. 3935). § 5903. Definitions. The following words and phrases when used in this chapter shall have the meanings given to them in this section unless the context clearly indicates otherwise: "Agricultural product." Any agricultural commodity or product, whether in raw or prepared form, including any commodity or product derived from livestock that is intended for human or livestock consumption or seed. "Distribute." To offer for sale, sell, barter, process or otherwise supply agricultural products. "Distributor." Any person who sells agricultural products to consumers or other distributors. The term does not include final retailers of agricultural products that do not process agricultural products. "Organic certification agent or agency." Private individuals or organizations residing or doing business in this Commonwealth who are certified by the Secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture as capable of inspecting farms and food distributor operations to determine whether the farms and food distributor operations conform with standards set forth in the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-624, 104 Stat. 3935). "Organically produced." Any agricultural product that is produced and distributed in accordance with this chapter. "Producer." Any person that grows, raises, processes or produces an agricultural product and distributes the agricultural product as organically produced. "USDA." The United States Department of Agriculture. § 5904. Organic certification. (a) General rule.--The department shall designate one or more organic certification agents or agencies to certify organically produced agricultural products in accordance with this chapter. (b) Eligibility for services or certification.--An organic certification agent or agency may not refuse services or certification to a person who meets all of the following requirements: (1) The person has met certification requirements for agricultural products. (2) The person has paid certification fees. (c) USDA seal.--Producers and distributors certified by a recognized organic certification agent or agency may incorporate the USDA seal in the label design of their agricultural product. (d) Records.--Each organic certification agent or agency designated by the department shall maintain detailed and verifiable records on each producer certified for a period of ten years. (e) Proposed regulations.--Organic certification agents or agencies may submit proposed regulations to the department. § 5905. Crop production practices and materials. (a) Seeds and seedlings.--To be certified under this chapter, producers shall not apply materials to or engage in practices on seeds or seedlings that are contrary to or inconsistent with USDA standards or this chapter. (b) Soil additives.--To be certified under this chapter, producers shall not: (1) Use any fertilizers containing synthetic ingredients or any commercially blended fertilizers containing materials prohibited under the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-624, 104 Stat. 3935) or this chapter. (2) Use phosphorus, lime or potash as a source of nitrogen. (c) Crop management.--To be certified under this chapter, producers shall not: (1) Use natural poisons such as arsenic or lead salts that have long-term effects and persist in the environment, as determined by the department. (2) Use plastic mulches unless the mulches are removed at the end of each growing or harvest season. (3) Use transplants that are treated with any synthetic or prohibited material. § 5906. Animal production practices and materials. (a) Livestock in general.--Any livestock that is to be slaughtered and sold or labeled as organically produced shall be raised in accordance with this chapter. (b) Breeder stock.--Breeder stock may be purchased from any source if the stock is not in the last third of gestation. (c) Practices.--In order for livestock to be certified as organically produced under this chapter producers shall not: (1) Feed the livestock feed other than organically produced feed that meets the requirements of this chapter. (2) Use the following feed: (i) Plastic pellets for roughage. (ii) Manure refeeding. (iii) Feed formulas containing urea. (3) Use growth promoters and hormones on livestock, whether implanted, ingested or injected, including antibiotics and synthetic trace elements used to stimulate growth or production of the livestock. (d) Livestock health care.--In order for livestock to be certified as organically produced under this chapter, producers shall not: (1) Use subtherapeutic doses of antibiotics. (2) Use synthetic internal parasiticides on a routine basis. (3) Administer medication, other than vaccinations, in the absence of illness. (e) Additional standards.-- (1) With the exception of day-old poultry, all poultry from which meat or eggs will be sold or labeled as organically produced shall be raised and handled in accordance with this chapter prior to and during the period in which the meat or eggs are sold. (2) A dairy animal from which milk or milk products will be distributed as organically produced shall be raised in accordance with this chapter for a period of not less than the 12 months immediately prior to the sale of the milk or milk products. (f) Livestock identification.-- (1) To be certified under this chapter, producers must keep adequate records and maintain a detailed, verifiable audit trail so that each animal or, in the case of poultry, each flock can be traced back to the producer. (2) In order to carry out the requirements of paragraph (1), each producer must keep accurate records on each animal or, in the case of poultry, each flock, including amounts and sources of all medications administered and all feeds and feed supplements bought and fed. § 5907. Producer statement. A producer shall not sell to a distributor any agricultural product which the producer represents as an organically produced agricultural product unless the producer received certification from an organic certification agency or agent prior to the sale. § 5908. Rules and regulations. (a) Adoption.--The department shall adopt rules and regulations in conformity with the act of June 25, 1982 (P.L.633, No.181), known as the Regulatory Review Act, and the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-624, 104 Stat. 3935) as the department believes are appropriate for the administration of this chapter. (b) Prohibited substances.--Whenever the department believes it appropriate to protect the interests of consumers of organically produced agricultural products, the department may, by regulation and in accordance with the Regulatory Review Act, add to the list of prohibited substances under this chapter. § 5909. Violations. The department shall issue orders to producers or distributors found violating any provision of this chapter or rules or regulations adopted under this chapter to cease their violations and desist from future violations. The organic certification agencies, the producers and the distributors shall report to the department any violations of this chapter of which they are aware. Whenever the department finds that a producer or distributor has committed a violation, the department shall impose upon and collect from the violator a civil fine not exceeding the total of the following amounts: (1) The Commonwealth's estimated costs of investigating and taking appropriate administrative and enforcement actions in respect to the violation. (2) $1,000.