Grower Groups under crop production:
Grower groups are organized into group of farmers/producers who intend to produce organic products /engaged in organic processes in accordance with the National Standards of Organic Production (NSOP)
The grower group certification is based on Internal Control System (ICS)
It is applicable to producer groups, farmer’s cooperatives, contract production and small scale processing units.
The producers in the group must apply similar production systems and the farms should be in geographical proximity.
The group shall consist of minimum 25 and maximum 500 members. Individual farms with land holding of 4 ha and above can also be a part of the group but will have to be inspected separately by external certification body every year. The total of such farms shall be less than 50% the total area of the group.
Organic Inputs (Bio-pesticides & Bio-fertilizers etc.,) approval.:
Every Operator can directly register with certification body by paying requisite fee and submitting the relevant documents
Individual Operator under crop production:Individual operator can directly register with certification body by paying requisite fee and submitting the relevant documents.
Requirement and eligibility criteria for Local Groups
A Local group should comprise of minimum 5 members belonging to the same village or close-by villages with continuous territory. Regional Councils can decide on maximum number of farmers per group keeping local situations in mind.
Adequate participation of women farmers shall be ensured.
At least a few (25%) members of the group shall be well versed with the PGS organic guarantee systems or certification system and National Standards of Organic Production (NSOP) or have undergone training on PGS guarantee system organized by Regional Councils, Zonal Council or PGS Secretariat or have been part of the core team of other functional PGS group.
All the members in the group sign the PGS pledge and group agreement to adhere to the group’s specific vision, participatory approach and collective responsibility.
There is no restriction on the size of holding of any individual farmer. But, in any case, the holding of one single member should not exceed 50% of the total land under the group.
Under PGS organic guarantee system parallel production and part conversion is not allowed, normally. Therefore, it is necessary that all group members need to bring their entire farm with livestock under organic management as per the PGS standards. However, Regional Councils in some cases may give exception and may also allow conversion in phases.
Should have access to PGS documents and preferably have access to computer and internet (optional).
Should have been registered with the concerned Regional Council and have obtained necessary user ID and password to upload data on PGS website.
In case, any farmer group is unable to operate on-line system of data uploading, then the services can be availed from Regional Council or of any other facilitating agency or local NGO or service providers etc.
In case, an individual farmer or a group of farmers with less than 5 members is/are propose to join existing LG, as advised by the RC, accept those farmers as members of the LG.
LG need to register only once, as there is no concept of renewal in PGS-India, till the LG keeps on doing certification activities, uploading peer appraisal summary sheets on season-to-season basis on PGS-India website. Non- submission of Peer Appraisal summary sheet continuously for two seasons or 12 months shall result in suspension of the group.
Revival of certification process for such groups will restart from the date of submission of fresh peer appraisal and fresh certification process will start with PGS-Green-1 status.