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Transitional Certification

A program designed to enable and support farmers and organizations on the journey to organic certification.
Transitional Certified by QAI mark

Currently, less than 1 percent of U.S. farmland is organic, and farmers are struggling to meet the growing consumer demand for organic food. While organic products can fetch higher prices, it takes three years for a farm to transition from conventional to organic, and typically farmers are not compensated for the initial costs of incrementally converting their land.

While large farms can shoulder this cost, small and medium-sized farms often cannot afford this upfront investment and this transitional period becomes a barrier to becoming certified organic.

What makes this program unique is that products made using at least 51 percent certified transitional content are allowed to use the QAI Transitional mark on their packaging. The benefits are:

  • Raises awareness with consumers.
  • Provides more choices in the marketplace.
  • Allows premium pricing to be distributed down to the farms in transition.

Who is eligible?

QAI’s Certified Transitional can certify organizations that grow, produce, manufacture, process and trade in:

  • food and beverage
  • dietary supplements
  • Cosmetics
  • household cleaners
  • textile products.

To ensure farms are progressing through the program, QAI, an NSF company, uses unannounced audits and sampling and sets increasingly rigorous requirements for year 1, year 2 and year 3 of the program. The goal is that transitional farms become certified to organic standards in year 3 and graduate from the program.

As one of the largest organic certifiers in North America, QAI has the expertise and relationships to help small and medium-sized farms transition to organic certification and thrive in the growing global organic market.

Marking your Products

The QAI Certified Transitional mark may be used on products made using at least 51 percent certified transitional ingredients by weight. We also offer this mark as a bilingual version in English/French.

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