Application and Evaluation Procedure
The general application process is as follows:
- Completed application documents are submitted to ACO for review
- ACO completes a document review of the application
- Once the application is completed and reviewed by the office and onsite audit will be allocated
- The auditor will complete the onsite audit
- The Certification Office completes a review of the onsite inspection report
- Once all outstanding issues have been addressed a IFOAM certificate of compliance is issued
- Annual audits (surveillance audits) are required to verify compliance
- On successful completion of the annual audit and closure of any corrective actions, a new certificate of compliance is issued
IFOAM contractual conditions can be found in the Certification Agreement received in the application information pack. The associated fees and possible penalties can be found on the fee schedule received in the application information pack.
Operators must comply with the requirements of the IFOAM standard (link provided on this site). Operators have the right to appeal certification decisions made by ACO, the process is as follows:
- The certified operator at all times has the right of appeal of decisions by either the auditor, the CRC (Certification Review Committee) or CO. Such appeals will usually be at the expense of the operator, except where it is shown that fault lies with the CO.
- An appeal of a non-compliance decision must be filed within 30 days from the receipt of the notification. Appeals are to be processed based on an application (in writing) from the applicant / Certified Operator concerned OR where the CO deems that an Appeals Committee needs to be enacted on behalf of a client. In the event that the appeals process sustains the client’s appeal, the CO will enter into negotiations with the client to offer reinstatement of certification and endeavour to find agreement with the client on a mutually satisfactory management plan including communication with industry in relation to the matter
Any updates to procedures or regulations will be published on the certification news section of this website.
Operators are required to maintain documentation as outlined in the IFOAM standard.