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Old 08-11-2008, 01:52 AM   #1
LayMeister
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Default Organic Hops Farming

I about to buy a 78 acre farm to keep my wife busy in the summer. She loves to grow and can heirloom fruits and vegetables. It has about equal part bush (lots of deer and turkey) and pasture/hay. I am thinking about growing Hops on a bit larger scale. I would like them to be certified as organic. Does anyone know how you would get this certification? The farm has been owned by an Old Order Amish family for 40 years and they haven't used any chemical fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides. I guess I should ask him for a signed statement to this effect before he moves to Ohio.

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Old 08-11-2008, 02:02 AM   #2
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Here in the states it takes 7 years to get certified. Sometimes the surrounding farms can effect certification because of drainage. I don't know if a statement will do it but you don't have anything to lose checking into it with your local guys.

What a nice husband you are to buy your wife a farm to support you. Hey wait a minute...

Edit: just found a blurb on Wiki
In Canada, the government has published a national organic standard, but it is a guideline only; legislation is in process. Certification is provided by private sector organizations. In Quebec, provincial legislation provides government oversight of organic certification within the province, through the Quebec Accreditation Board (Conseil D'Accréditation Du Québec).


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Old 08-11-2008, 02:34 AM   #3
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I believe that it is actually five years with no chemicals not seven, and when you start the process you will get a visit from a inspector each year. There is a fee involved that may vary by certification organization and after that you are golden. The whole process is not cheap, you can always state "organically grown" instead of certified organic. If you look at the entry form for the seven bridges national organic homebrew challenge, they state that the hops must be either certified organic if purchased commercially or organically grown if they are homegrown. Unless you are selling them, I wouldn't worry about the certification. Hops also come in "Fish friendly" which allows for some chemicals but none that are hazardous to habitats.

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Old 08-11-2008, 02:49 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nurmey View Post
Here in the states it takes 7 years to get certified. Sometimes the surrounding farms can effect certification because of drainage. I don't know if a statement will do it but you don't have anything to lose checking into it with your local guys.

What a nice husband you are to buy your wife a farm to support you. Hey wait a minute...

Edit: just found a blurb on Wiki
In Canada, the government has published a national organic standard, but it is a guideline only; legislation is in process. Certification is provided by private sector organizations. In Quebec, provincial legislation provides government oversight of organic certification within the province, through the Quebec Accreditation Board (Conseil D'Accréditation Du Québec).
There aren't any farms that drain on the farm I am buying since it is on the hilltop between two drainage basins. I'll look at the wiki you mention and see what is entailed.

Ya, nice guy. I get to stay in town and make the bucks so that that she can play on the farm. It does have a nice 1200 sq ft heated shop that will be great to brew in in the winter.

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Old 08-11-2008, 02:51 AM   #5
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It's been a while since I paid attention to organic anything so bow to ander's info.
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Old 08-11-2008, 02:51 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by anderj View Post
I believe that it is actually five years with no chemicals not seven, and when you start the process you will get a visit from a inspector each year. There is a fee involved that may vary by certification organization and after that you are golden. The whole process is not cheap, you can always state "organically grown" instead of certified organic. If you look at the entry form for the seven bridges national organic homebrew challenge, they state that the hops must be either certified organic if purchased commercially or organically grown if they are homegrown. Unless you are selling them, I wouldn't worry about the certification. Hops also come in "Fish friendly" which allows for some chemicals but none that are hazardous to habitats.

-ander
I'm actually thinking about selling them, so I'll look into what soil testing may be necessary.

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