Part ll. Does Certification Matter?
If a farm growing to organic standards has a direct relationship with its customers, and has built trust, credibility, and a reliable market, does certification matter? What are the benefits to farmers, and how does certification contribute to supporting the transition to an organic agricultural system?
1) Certification Provides Protection From Co-opting
As the market grows, more conventional and industrial companies and farms are developing “local” and “sustainable” products with glorious labels, professional promotion plans, and prices far lower than any small, organic farmer can produce. Organic certification is crucial to differentiate product and protect farmers and consumers alike from this green washing and eroding of the local and sustainable market.