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The vast majority of organic commodities pass through the hands of at least one middleman, also called a handler, on the way from the farmer to the consumer. Certified organic handlers are certified to handle organic products in accordance with National Organic Standards. Organic handlers perform numerous functions, including packing and shipping, manufacturing and processing, and brokering, wholesaling, or distributing.
The ERS organic handler database contains select results from the 2004 and 2007 Nationwide Surveys of Organic Manufacturers, Processors, and Distributors, administered by Washington State University, Social and Economic Sciences Research Center and funded by USDA's Risk Management Agency. The surveys covered a variety of topics related to the procurement and contracting of organic products and ingredients. Data are available on 9 commodity groups, such as fruit and nuts, and 45 commodities, such as berries and citrus. The procurement data include information from 1,038 facilities in 2004 and 1,013 facilities in 2007; the contracts data include information from 686 facilities in 2004 and 620 facilities in 2007 that use contracts.
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Procurement and Contracting by Organic Handlers, 2007 Survey Download as Excel
Procurement and Contracting by Organic Handlers, 2004 Survey Download as Excel