I am a certified organic farmer. Must seeds for cover crops I plant be organic?
Yes, unless conditions meet those outlined in Section 205.204, provided below:
§ 205.204 Seeds and planting stock practice standard.
(a) The producer must use organically grown seeds, annual seedlings, and planting stock: Except, That,
(1) Nonorganically produced, untreated seeds and planting stock may be used to produce an organic crop when an equivalent organically produced variety is not commercially available, Except, That, organically produced seed must be used for the production of edible sprouts;
(2) Nonorganically produced seeds and planting stock that have been treated with a substance included on the National List of synthetic substances allowed for use in organic crop production may be used to produce an organic crop when an equivalent organically produced or untreated variety is not commercially available;
(3) Nonorganically produced annual seedlings may be used to produce an organic crop when a temporary variance has been granted in accordance with § 205.290(a)(2);
(4) Nonorganically produced planting stock to be used to produce a perennial crop may be sold, labeled, or represented as organically produced only after the planting stock has been maintained under a system of organic management for a period of no less than 1 year; and
(5) Seeds, annual seedlings, and planting stock treated with prohibited substances may be used to produce an organic crop when the application of the materials is a requirement of Federal or State phytosanitary regulations.