The movement to make our food system more regenerative—and sustainable for animals, people, and planet alike—just took a huge leap forward: The Regenerative Organic Alliance (ROA), a group of experts in farming, ranching, soil health, animal welfare, and fair trade, just launched the Regenerative Organic Certified™ (ROC™) certification standard for food, fiber, and personal care products. And not only is the certification program now open for business, but the very first ROC-certified products have already hit the marketplace!
ROC is comprehensive: Beyond the baseline USDA Organic certification, ROC then adds more advanced criteria to ensure soil health, animal welfare, and social fairness, making it the highest standard for organic agriculture in the world. By choosing an ROC product, consumers know at a glance that their purchase supports farm workers, soil health, and pasture-based animal welfare. The new certification has three levels—bronze, silver, and gold—which require farms and businesses to phase in more rigorous regenerative organic practices over time.
Compassion in World Farming USA is proud to be a founding member of the Regenerative Organic Alliance, which was established in 2018 to promote regenerative organic farming as the gold standard for agriculture. After its formation, the ROA conducted a year-long pilot program to test this new, rigorous standard on real farming operations around the world.
ROA exists to heal a broken system, repair a damaged planet, and empower farmers and consumers to forge a brighter future through better farming. And the time is now: COVID-19 has quickly revealed the underlying risks and inequalities in the global food system, and it’s never been clearer that adhering to regenerative organic practices is necessary to improve human health, ensure good welfare for animals, achieve justice for farmers and farm workers, and protect the planet from the catastrophic environmental effects of factory farming.
“The journey to become Regenerative Organic Certified has been unique for each of our pilot program participants, with significant learnings along the way,” said Elizabeth Whitlow, Executive Director of the Regenerative Organic Alliance. “The success that these leading, regenerative organic businesses have achieved in only one year is proof that ROC is not only a viable and attainable certification, but that indeed we are shaping the future of agriculture supply chains and consumer demand for truly regenerative organic products. I look forward to growing the certification in the years ahead with many more brands.”
Want to get your hands on ROC-certified products and support companies demonstrating their commitment to the environment, animal welfare, soil health, and fair labor standards? The first brands and farms to display the ROC label include:
- Apricot Lane Farms
- Dr. Bronner’s
- Nature’s Path
- Grain Place Foods
- Patagonia Provisions
- Lotus Foods
- Sol Simple
Other certified farms and businesses with products forthcoming:
- Tablas Creek Vineyards
- Herb Pharm
- Guayaki Yerba Mate
For more information about the Regenerative Organic Alliance and the certification program, click here.