1. Submit completed Certification Pack
A producer planning the conversion of a farm from conventional or organic to Biodynamic should start the process by requesting a Certification Pack from the Demeter office.Â The Certification Pack includes the initial application, which asks for explanation regarding the past management of the land to be certified, and the proposed plan to move towards Demeter certification. This document is updated annually as a renewal, and is thereafter referred to as the Farm Plan.
It is recommended, but not required, that new applications be submitted prior to April 1 so that the farm inspection can to be planned and conducted during the growing season.
2. Arrange a farm visit
After Demeter receives the completed Certification Pack and appropriate fees the application is reviewed and assigned to an inspector who will contact the applicant to arrange a farm visit. During the visit, the information entered on the application will be verified and clarified.Â
3. Follow up on Summary Report recommendations
The Inspectorâ€™s report and findings, along with the growerâ€™s application, will be circulated to members of the Evaluation Circle (EC) to recommend or not recommend certification along with requirements and recommendations.Â The Demeter office will then notify the applicant of the certification decision and forward a list of suggested actions/requirements.Â The applicant is required to acknowledge this Evaluation Circle Decision and Summary Report and to sign off on acceptance of the requirements.Â If certification is not granted, an explanation will be provided.
A licensee wishing to amend the scope of an existing certification should write to the Demeter office giving details in support of the request.Â The Demeter office will decide what additional information is needed, if any.Â A revisit to the facility may be required.
4. Annual Renewal of Certification
Following the first yearâ€™s certification, Demeter sends out a Renewal Packet annually. A farm must have its certification renewed every year. Certification is contingent upon the receipt of a fully filled-out Renewal Packet, including an updated Farm Report, and the completion of a satisfactory on-site farm evaluation conducted during the growing season. Farmers must have resolved any issues found to be out-of-compliance at that time.
The Renewal Packet includes a declaration by the farmer, given in good faith and to the best of his/her knowledge, concerning the completeness and correctness of information supplied. Any anticipated changes in agricultural management, or any measures that could have a significant influence on the farm as a whole, must be discussed with Demeter.