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We wanted to share this exciting news with you about the changes with organic certification and why it matters a great deal.

The USDA Certified Organic label is the most rigorous standard for organic foods. By choosing organic, you're not only reducing your family's exposure to harmful substances like pesticides, antibiotics, and hormones but reducing harmful environmental farming.  All that said, consumers are losing a little faith whether the organic label is genuine.

To provide more oversight and enforcement authority to ensure trust in organic foods the biggest update since 1990 to the USDA organic regulations was enacted. The Strengthening Organic Enforcement (SOE) Rule is now the law of the land to combat organic fraud.

There are so many terms and labels out there it can get confusing. Terms like certified organic, 100% organic, made with organic ingredients, and natural, for which there is no standard definition. This can make it difficult to know what each label really means and why it matters.

With this new rule, the USDA aims to ensure even greater confidence in organic products, minimize fraud in the organic supply chain and protect and promote high quality products and at the same time signal that these products are worth consumers’ money.

The new USDA rule requires organic imports to be a member of the National Organic Program (NOP).  

The U.S. facilitates trade with many other trading partners. This opens new markets and provides diversity for consumers. The most common type of organic trade arrangement is an organic equivalence arrangement e.g. when two countries recognize each other’s organic program as being equivalent. If two countries are equivalent, organic products can be sold in either country. Greece and the U.S. mirror each other in their organic farming standards and have long been organic equivalents.

As long-standing USDA Organic Certified in Greece, we are excited to announce that we are now NOP certified in the U.S.



Since 1973, the CCOF (California Certified Organic Farmers) seal has been recognized as a mark of excellence in the organic marketplace and around the world. It is in the top 10 organic certifying agencies globally and is a National Organic Program certifier.

When you see the CCOF seal, you can be assured that the use of sewage sludge, ionizing radiation, and most synthetic pesticides and fertilizers are prohibited from organic production. Both the USDA and CCOF believe that genetic modification is fundamentally incompatible with organic production.

Additionally, the new national organic standard also regulates organic processed products, ensuring that artificial preservatives, flavors, and dyes are not allowed.

You will see the USDA AND the CCOF seal on our organic products.



Globally, only 1.5% of farmland is organic.  Nationally, that number is less than 1% per U.S. Department of Agriculture findings.

However, many countries have far higher shares.  The countries with the largest organic share of their total farmland are Liechtenstein (41.0 %), Austria (26.1%), São Tomé and Príncipe (24.9%). Some states in India are or aspire to be 100% organic in the coming years.


Greece is currently in 10th place within the European Union, accounting for 3.3% of total European organic crop area.

There has been a gradual increase in Greek organic EVOOs, but the rate remains very low. In recent years, the most dangerous pesticides have been banned and aerial spraying of crops has stopped altogether so even conventional olive groves are more organic than not in Greece. 

Industrial agribusiness has extinguished biodiversity everywhere. While people have historically cultivated more than 7,000 plant species worldwide, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) states that just nine crops account for two-thirds of global crop production.

Greece is a natural gene bank. Its archipelago, varied terrain and microclimates favored so many divergent evolutionary paths that today it has the highest plant biodiversity in Europe, with approximately 6,000 wild plant species or subspecies, and thousands of cultivated plants.  

Buying organic ensures growing organic and that in turn ensures biodiversity and the environment's health.


Becoming certified organic is not an overnight process for farmers.  Adopting approved organic practices is only part of it. For a food to become certified organic, the farmland must be proven to have not received any pesticides or unapproved substances for at least three (3) years.  

Our Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oils are certified organic by the Hellenic Republic Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development (the Directorate is EU based), the USDA for 30 years and now we are CCOF certified!  

By: Barbara, BSN, RN, MSN, CRA at The Tassos Group