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Home > Craft Topics > Regulations > Organic Producers

Producers, Processors and Packers of Organic Products

The following information is for guidance only. For further information, please contact your local Trading Standards Service. 

Regulations 2004
, which implement the European Council Regulation No. 2092/91. These Regulations apply to any agricultural products, livestock or foods which are described as 'organic'.


What is organic?


The description 'organic' can only be used to describe agricultural products, livestock and food which are produced and prepared in accordance with the detailed standards laid down. These standards also include requirements for record keeping, labelling, marketing and an inspection and certification system.

The methods of production, processing, etc of organic products have to be inspected and certified by an authorised body to ensure that they meet the specified standards (a list of these bodies in the UK is provided at the end of this leaflet).


What labelling is required?


a. Agricultural products described as organic must show clearly that the description relates to the method of agricultural production, e.g. "organically grown carrots".
b. Processed foods described as organic must consist of at least 95% of ingredients which were produced in accordance with the laid down standards of production. The description must make it clear that it relates to the method of production, and must be accompanied by a reference to the ingredients concerned unless such a reference is given in the list of ingredients, e.g. "Flour made from organically grown wheat".
c. Labelling must include the code number of the inspection authority or body to which the operator is subject, e.g. "Organic Certification UK2".
d. Processed foods containing at least 70% of organically produced ingredients may be labelled with an indication of organic production, but only if:

The organically produced ingredient may not be made to appear more prominent in the ingredient list by use of different colours or size or style of writing.
e. Organic foods from countries outside the European Community may only be imported if:

Who are the authorised bodies?


Any person who produces, processes or packs organic food products must have their methods of production and processing, etc inspected and certified by an authorised body. These bodies in turn must be registered and overseen by ACOS (Advisory Committee on Organic Standards) - the appointed Control Authority for the UK.

A current list of authorised bodies and their relevant contact details can be found on the DEFRA website


What are the consequences of non-compliance?


Failure to comply with these requirements is a criminal offence. The maximum penalty on conviction is a fine of £5000.


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