USDA Removes Substances from National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances in Organic Agriculture

August 3, 2016

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) published a final rule removing five substances from the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (National List).  The substances will no longer be allowed in organic production or handling after Sept. 12, 2016.

The removal of the substances from the National List reflect a comprehensive sunset review process by the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), and feedback from organic farmers, businesses, and consumer groups.  To learn more about the sunset review process and the role of the NOSB, visit Sunset Review & Renewal Process.

As recommended by the NOSB, the following five substances will be removed from the National list:

  • egg white lysozyme;
  • cyclohexylamine;
  • diethylaminoethanol;
  • octadecylamine; and
  • tetrasodium pyrophosphate.

After considering public comments and supporting documents, the NOSB determined that the substances are no longer necessary or essential for organic handling since substances and practices exist that provide alternatives that are more compatible with organic production and handling.

The rule is effective on Sept.12, 2016, the current sunset date of the substances.  Organic products already in the stream of commerce prior to Sept. 12, 2016 (i.e., those manufactured, in storage, or on shelves, labeled, and ready for shipment), can still be sold as organic after the effective date.  Organic products manufactured on or after Sept. 12, 2016, must comply with the new requirements.

For more information, see the Federal Register Notice.