HDOA accepting applications for organic cost-share program

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Hawaii Department of Agriculture is accepting applications for organic certification cost-share assistance to organic farmers, livestock operators and produce handlers.

Ninety-five thousand dollars in renewed federal funding has been dispensed to assist Hawaii agribusinesses with organic certification costs.

It is required for organic farmers and livestock operators to have their farms and practices examined each year, in addition to being certified by a USDA approved agent.

Under the Agricultural Management Assistance Organic Certification Cost-Share Program, 75 percent, up to $750, of inspection and certification costs are eligible for reimbursement.

Hawaii has received $75,000 for the Oct. 1, 2010 to Sept. 30, 2011 funding period.

This is the third year Hawaii has taken part in this program.

The USDA also has a separate program to help certified organic processors and handlers. Under thee USDA National Organic Certification Cost-Share Program, $20,000 has been given to Hawaii, with a 75 percent reimbursement for certification costs, or $750.

The state has been participating in this program since 2004.

The HDOA has approved 91 growers and producers in Hawaii in fiscal year 2010.

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