About Organic Certifiers
Organic Certifiers (OC) is committed to working with organic producers who are dedicated to providing consumers with certified organic products. Our job is to ensure organic integrity of production throughout the entire chain of custody. OC takes pride in providing reliable, efficient and cost effective certification services. We serve clients of all sizes– from the small grower to internationally recognized businesses. Staff and management are committed to impartiality throughout the certification process. Through “word of mouth” referrals and respect of the organic industry, OC has grown to be the 3rd largest certification agency in  California.
Our Mission
Organic Certifiers Mission Statement
Organic Certifiers (OC) was founded on the principle of creating simple and easy solutions for organic certification.  We take pride in providing a “sound and sensible” approach while guiding our clients through the certification process. Each client at OC is assigned a client representative, qualified to answer questions or concerns about certification.  OC practices sensible paperwork, quick response time, and strong client relationships. OC a family business invested in your success.
Our History
Organic Certifiers History of Organic Certification
Organic Certifiers was established by the Siple family in Ventura County, California. Susan and Randolph Siple started OC from observing the frustrations of achieving certification. With the combination of their experience as organic farmers and private practice lawyers, Susan and Randolph knew they would make the perfect certification team. In 1996, they commenced OC and began certifying local organic farmers using a common sense approach.

In 2002, OC was one of the first certification agencies to become accredited to the USDA NOP (National Organic Program) standard. OC began to steadily grow and gain respect in the organic community. Today, OC has grown to be California’s 3rd largest certification agency. OC continues to approach organic certification with a focus on “sound and sensible” by offering reasonable information requests, quick response time, and forming one-on-one relationships between OC representatives and clients.

Accreditation
Organic Certifiers is USDA, ISO 17065 and has been certifying the organic community since 1996. Our company was one of the first accredited by the USDA in early 2002.
Testimonials

Luna & Larry’s Coconut Bliss

“Our work with Organic Certifiers has been very valuable for our business. They have worked closely with us as our business has grown in the U.S. and internationally. I’m most appreciative of how quickly they respond to questions, and the clear focus they have when reviewing our processes, products, and packaging. They not only audit and review our processes and ingredients annually, but are a resource I turn to frequently throughout the year to ensure we continue to meet USDA NOP standards. Thank you, OC, for all your help and guidance.” Karen Campbell

Alpine Valley Bread

“When we first decided to look into becoming organic certified, we were scared of the process and unknown. We investigated several organic agencies for help. Organic Certifiers were very helpful and patient in the certifying process. We love the personal attention with any question or request. They are very good about keeping us updated on new regulatory requirements. We appreciate their kind and cooperative approach in their communication. Organic Certifiers have been great business partners in helping us expand our organic products. We are so grateful we choose Organic Certifiers.” Todd Wood

Select Ingredients

“As  a client of Organic Certifiers we have been extremely pleased with the quality of service they have provided. The staff is always friendly and very customer oriented. They have handled some of our complicated issues with ease and with very quick turnaround times. I cannot say enough good things about  Organic Certifiers organization.” Dr. Bruce Howe President

Angelo’s Farms

“Since I received my Organic Certificate a year ago my business has grown over 100 percent. My Dad was a grower all his life, now 81 years old and still farming, he was so against getting organic certification thinking it would be a hassle, but it was no hassle at all and now he loves it and thinks it’s the only way to go.” Tony Filandrianos

Ultimate Superfoods

“We are proud to have a partner like Organic Certifiers.” 

Sean Cassar

Tonic Scene Company

“Organic Certifiers has been a wonderful company to work with. Each time I have contacted them all my questions are answered and any information I need is provided. This has been incredibly helpful as we were not sure how to go about getting our organic certification. Yseult has been especially amazing to us! Thank you Organic Certifiers for making this process so easy!” Karen Webster

Healing Noni Co., LLC

“Aloha, My name is Michael Harvey owner of Healing Noni Co., LLC out of Big Island of Hawaii. We have been working with Organic Certifiers for quite a few years now as our organic certifier. We are very happy with their services. Organic Certifiers has provided us with timely service whether it be inspections, preparation of international forms and certificates, information, issues etc.We highly recommend them as your certifier also!” Michael Harvey

Giusti Ranch & Vineyards

“We run a 137-year-old family owned and operated organic apple farming & management company serving about 90 parcels (approx. 200 acres). We have been certified with Organic Certifiers (OC) since 2008 after switching from one of the larger certifying agencies where we were getting lost in the corporate shuffle after 15 years of loyalty. From our initial phone call to OC, we could sense that this is a company run like a family-owned business–something we could relate to. We have been very pleased with the personal, professional and friendly service that we receive and the relationship that we have built with OC over the past 5 years. We look forward to working with Organic Certifiers for years to come.” Kurt Giusti
Meet the Certification Team!
Lennea Morris

Lennea Morris

Director of Operations

Why is organics important to you?

Organics is important to me because I believe in the practice of integrating cultural, biological, mechanical means that foster cycling of resources to promote ecological balance and to conserve biodiversity. I believe in providing good healthy food to consumers that can fight off diseases and illnesses, not to create diseases.

What is your organic Background?

Graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a Bachelors in Food Science and concentration in Culinology. I have been involved in the food industry since 2009 and organic food industry since 2011.

 What are your hobbies?

I enjoy cooking, gardening, shopping, and staying physically fit (outdoor activities)

 If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

Something tropical, with bright colors; a little fish in the Caribbean or little bird in the rain-forest.

Nicole Davis

Nicole Davis

Sales and Marketing Manager

Why is organics important to you?

As caretakers of the earth’s soil and limited natural resources, we must continue to apply our evolving knowledge to our agricultural systems in order to improve the health of our planet and people. I firmly believe the USDA’s National Organic program is an integral step in the right direction and I am proud to contribute to building a better food system.ent.

What is your organic background?

Earning my degree in Agricultural Communication from Cal Poly State University San Luis Obispo further intensified my passion for the food business. With a hands-on approach to a variety of coursework in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences, it is here where I learned how to apply sustainable farming principles and how to effectively share the compelling story of agriculture.

What are your hobbies?

I enjoy all kinds of outdoor activities such as hiking, biking or just hanging out by a beach or lake. I also like to cook, although I am still learning.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

If I could be any animal I would be a lion because the females get to do the hunting. Plus, lions live in family groups so if you mess with one lion you have to deal with the whole pride!

Christie Pasamonte

Christie Pasamonte

Sales and Marketing Coordinator

Why is organics important to you?

I believe transparency and integrity are so important when it comes to the food industry’s relationship with consumers. If you are fueling your body with it, you have a right to know what’s in it and how it’s produced. Organics upholds this integrity and brings peace of mind that the fresh produce and products you are buying come from traceable, accountable, sustainable sources.

What is your organic background?

I graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara in 2014 with a  Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Studies. With an interest in biodiversity and sustainability, I was excited at the opportunity to enter the organics world in 2018. Though I am fairly new to the industry, I have learned so much thus far, and plan to continue growing my knowledge and experiences.

What are your hobbies?

I love staying active and being outside – playing rugby, CrossFit, hiking, biking, swimming, camping, kayaking, going to the beach, hanging at the park – you name it! I also like to tend to my crafty side with painting, lettering, calligraphy, and graphic design. More often than not, however, you can find me cuddling with my dog.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be an elephant. These fascinating giants are complex, intelligent, beautiful, and most importantly, get to travel and eat all day. They live in close-knit matriarchal families that can hold their own – you wouldn’t want to mess with them!

Lianne Nunes

Lianne Nunes

Department Manager - Livestock

 Why is organics important to you?

Organic agriculture is important to me because my family is a part of the organic community here in California. My involvement within the industry through my family’s operation has shown me that working hard and giving back to the environment through organic practices, does give producers something in return. As a producer, you receive the satisfaction of knowing that the products you’re producing are produced in the way nature intended by using no pesticides, GMO’s or products that harm the environment. My family has been a part of the California dairy industry for almost the past 100 years and I want to do everything I can to make sure that my family will be around for the next 100. Organics is the way I can help do that because it is an opportunity to change my way of life that works to preserve the environment for generations to come.

 What is your organic background?

I graduated June 2013 from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo with a major of Dairy Science and a minor in Agribusiness. While at Cal Poly, I wrote a review of literature for my senior project that explored that differences, benefits and drawbacks of both organic and conventional dairy farming. I was born and raised on my family’s dairy farm in Northern California that recently transitioned into organic production. I also interned at an organic dairy farm in Point Reyes, CA where I learned a lot about organic dairy farming practices and the National Organic Program.

 What are your hobbies?

My hobbies include playing the piano, cooking/baking, snowboarding, spending time outside on my family’s dairy (when I get the chance), and spending time with my family and friends

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

If I could be any animal, I would want to be a dolphin. They are very enthusiastic and playful animals, kind of like myself, and they travel all across the oceans and explore tons of beautiful places.

Jaqueline Wagner

Jaqueline Wagner

Certification Specialist - Livestock

Why is organics important to you?

Organics is important to me because I believe it is the only way to really be connected and aware of  what you are eating. When you buy any organic product you know that it is the cleanest product you can get and nothing but hard work, dedication and care went into growing or raising it. I have never met an organic farmer who didn’t 100% throw themselves into their operation and their products. Purchasing organic meat, dairy and produce is something you can feel good about and I feel proud to get to be a part of the organic community!

What is your organic background?

I graduated from California State University Chico in 2019 with my degree in Animal sciences with a focus on the Organic Dairy Industry. During my time at Cal State Chico I was fortunate enough to work at the University’s organic dairy. It was during these four years that my education and passion for the organic dairy industry really grew.

What are your hobbies?

I love anything outside! I have two dogs and we spend most of our time finding new hiking and walking trails. I also love cooking and playing around with new recipes. I also love reading and finding new books!

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

Probably a barn kitten! I would get to spend my days napping in the sun, playing and exploring the farm. I love to be playful and spend most of my time out in the sunshine, so this would probably be a good fit!

Kendall Martin

Kendall Martin

Department Manager - Crop

Why is organics important to you?

Organic is important to me because it helps to protect the environment and promote sustainable practices. Its important to me to have a positive impact on this earth.

What is your organic background?

I have been in the organic industry for 4 years working with both farms and processors. I have been really enjoying working with local California farmers.

What are your hobbies?

I love being outside and rock climbing. I also love walking and playing with my puppy Puffin.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be a golden retriever in a good home because they have the best lives when they’re loved.

Cheryl Madden

Cheryl Madden

Certification Specialist - Crop

Why is organics important to you?

As a farmer growing vegetables organically in the late 80s, early 90’s, it was very evident then that our customers were enjoying the increasing availability of farm fresh, non-conventionally grown produce. I never imagined then however that an organic produce section would ever be in a regular store. In only 25 years what big changes have been made!

What is your organic background?

I grew up in Long Beach, California. After high school I went to Long Beach City College, Santa Barbara City College, and UC Santa Barbara, graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Geography/ Environmental Studies. After college, I traveled to Lesotho, South Africa (during Apartheid) and worked on a dam project for subsistence agriculture.

In my early adult years I worked for the US Forest Service as a Wilderness Patrol Ranger (Mt Baldy & San Gabriel Canyon) and was also a YAC field leader who managed crews (maintaining the Los Padres firebreaks and local Santa Barbara recreational trails).

I later received certification as a Wastewater Treatment Operator and worked at the El Estero WW Treatment Facility in Santa Barbara.

What are your hobbies?

I enjoy hiking most. We have an RV now and I like traveling in that vehicle with our two dogs.I love Yosemite and Lake Tahoe.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

A Dolphin: They are very smart & talk a lot. They move in herds and their predators are few. Their food is plentiful, and they are always SMILING.

Janae Betterton

Janae Betterton

Certification Specialist - Crop

Why is organics important to you?

I believe organic is the future. Organics nurture the planet we live in and help increase biodiversity, thus increasing the Earth’s natural ability to renew itself with out damaging the soils and environment in which our food comes from. We’ve only got one earth so we need to take care of it. I take pride in being apart of an industry that is beneficial to the world we live in.

What is your organic background?

I have been a certification agent for 6 years, and I love what I do. I have also had IOIA training. I enjoy assisting clients through certification and educating them on the importance of their efforts to maintain organic integrity.

What are your hobbies?

I am a bibliophile. I LOVE to read and have an almost photographic memory for what I have read. Other than that my kids’ hobbies are my hobbies. I have a trumpet player, a soccer player, and 2 girl scouts. They take up most of my free time. I am also a teen youth minister for my church.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be a Siberian tiger. Or a dolphin. Probably a dolphin. Since Siberian tigers are almost extinct. Both are very beautiful and possess qualities I admire.

Jasmin De Luna

Jasmin De Luna

Certification Specialist/LPO Lead - Crop

Why is organics important to you?

Organics is important to me because it supports a greater cause in food integrity and I care about the food that nourishes my body. Organics can also help decrease the gap between consumers and farmers by creating awareness of where their food is coming from and how it was grown or prepared.

What is your organic background?

I graduated from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona in June 2015 with a major in Food Marketing and Agribusiness Management and minor in Multicultural Leadership Studies. While in college I undertook an internship with the USDA-Food Safety Inspection Service in Washington D.C. where I engaged in food sourcing and food safety. On my return I did a proposal for bringing greater awareness of our food sources and farmers in California. I then presented my proposal in Sacramento, CA. I now continue to support farmers markets and actively seek organic products.

What are your hobbies?

I love working with horses on the weekends, whether it’s riding or caring for them it brings me ultimate peace. I also swim, run at the beach, dance, bake creative cakes, and make arts and craft projects.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

If I were an animal I would be an Andalusian horse because they are strong, beautiful, and intelligent. They are peaceful out at pasture, yet helpful around the ranch.

Nestor Carrizosa

Nestor Carrizosa

Certification Specialist - Crop

Why is organics important to you?

Organics are important to me because it focuses on the comprehensive use and reuse of local resources, promotes ecological balance, and conserves biodiversity. The organic produce community and business have been growing tremendously year-to-year, and the focus has been the diversification of the commodities available as organic using global sourcing; this brings the need for more comprehensive programs to monitor and validate the authenticity of organic products by adding third-party audits to the whole production chain, starting in the fields and ending with educating the final customer. My favorite part is being able to help educate our growers and processors on the importance of having an organic program in place.

What is your organic background ?

I earned a B.S. Biochemical Engineer of Foods (Food Processing) from Durango Technological Institute in Mexico and have taken Independent Organic Inspectors’ Association inspector training courses. I have great experience in fieldwork in Mexico with processing facilities as well as grower relations cultivated through my years working with US based companies, where my main job was the implementation of all grower, packing, and processor’s organic and food safety certifications for operations contracted in Mexico; along with my independent organic inspector activities. I got involved in organic production back in ’95 while processing apple juice concentrate. At that time, one of my customers asked for Organic Apple Juice, so I got immersed into the rules and regulations available at that time in order to set up the production program from field to juice plant. It didn’t take long for me to realize that these rules were not so different than the growing practices I’ve seen as a kid at my grandpa’s oat and potato yard.

What are your hobbies?

I love the outdoors, so at any chance I have I go up to the mountains with my family to enjoy being away from the city, watch the night sky and the beauty of the forest. I also enjoy working at home on any repairs and/or improvements needed (including not so needed).

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be a Wolf; this is my favorite animal. Wolves develop close relationships and strong social bonds, proving this is a highly intelligent, adaptable and sociable animal.

Dana Savoie

Dana Savoie

Certification Specialist - Crop

Why is organics important to you?

Organics encourages healthy soil, plants, animals, air and people and helps to foster stronger connections between farmers and consumers. Additionally, the organic seal gives power to the people to be able to easily make informed decisions about what they eat and who they support with their purchasing power.

What is your organic background?

I first learned of organics through my coursework in Global Food Systems while pursuing my degree in International Relations at UC Davis and I was captivated by the movement ever since. I have worked in the organics industry indirectly for many years within the global coffee supply chain supporting both farmers and roasters. I received my IOIA Inspector Accreditation in the Spring of 2018 and started working as a certification specialist shortly thereafter.

What are your hobbies?

I try to be outdoors and out of cellphone range as much as I can. At home I enjoy gardening, cooking and taking advantage of the arts and music offerings around me. In general, I love to learn, be that in the form of reading, podcast listening, traveling or taking classes.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be a flamingo. Aside from being equally silly and beautiful looking, they are survivalists and adaptable to many environments.

Austin Hoefs

Austin Hoefs

Certification Specialist - Crop

Why is organics important to you?

Organic is important to me because it adds a level of integrity to a complex food system. Organics can also contribute to vibrant rural communities, greater biodiversity, and healthy financial systems. This “triple bottom line” will play a vital role in all business ventures in the future. Overall, it gives consumers confidence, especially when they have no contact with the farmer.

What is your organic background?

I worked at a large vegetable processor right after college. I handled the contracting of both conventional and organic canning crops in Wisconsin and northern Illinois. As the the “in-house” organic specialist I compiled all the organic paperwork and consulted with the organic growers regarding plant health, inputs, harvest timing, etc. I have also spent time working on farms in New Zealand.

What are your hobbies?

I enjoy exercising, reading about biophysics, and carpentry.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be a Kea. Keas are parrots that live in the alps of New Zealand. I think it would be awesome waking up everyday to the beautiful landscape they call home.

Alexandria Villamin

Alexandria Villamin

Certification Specialist - Handling

Why is organics important to you?

I am a big supporter of sustainability and helping the environment. Organics helps us to be more sustainable and conscious of how we are effecting the Earth. It also brings farmers and consumers closer together so that they can build a better understanding of the foods that they are purchasing and how it is grown. I believe it’s important to know what is going into your food and what you are eating.

What is your organic background?

I graduated from San Diego State University with a degree in Foods & Nutrition. Organics was a small portion of what I learned in college but I’m glad that I found my way into the organic industry. I’ve worked in the organic industry for about 4.5 years now and I’ve learned so much about the regulations and the different companies out there who are passionate about organics. I still get excited when I see new organic products in the works and on the market.

What are your hobbies?

My hobbies are video editing, traveling, going to concerts, and finding new food/coffee spots.

If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?

If I could be any animal I would be an otter because they are playful and love being in the water!

Rebecca Holladay

Rebecca Holladay

Certification Specialist - Handling

Why is organics important to you? 

The growing interest in organics by consumers is advocating for strides to be made to take better care of our planet.  Organics is a fundamental part of that, encouraging biodiversity and an ecological balance.  This has become even more important to me since becoming a mom and realizing how important it is to watch what we feed our bodies  (of course, my daughter would live on lollipops).

What is your organic background?

I went to Northeastern University in Boston and worked for Farm Aid throughout my Co-operative education experience. I spoke regularly with farmers in need of assistance and was exposed to the daily struggles with which farmers are faced.   I worked in the organic certification industry following college, as well as in private label development for organic brands.  I am happy to be back working in the organic certification realm as I love helping clients navigate through the organic regulation.

What are your hobbies?

I have a 4 year old daughter and she is by far every minute of free time I have!  She is the best “hobby” I could ask for.  We love to explore local parks and hike to waterfalls!   On rare occasions, my non-mom interests are listening to local music (we live in Nashville) and volunteering with a local group called Petal Project .  This group arranges floral arrangements with dementia and Alzheimer residents and delivers the final arrangements to assisted living residents around Nashville.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would love to fly high above the world as a bird and take in the amazing sights – although I would probably move to Costa Rica.

Lynne Grayton

Lynne Grayton

Certification Specialist - Handling

Why is organics important to you? 

I admire the sustainability of the land and the preservation for future generations. I also enjoy working with clients and educating them on the regulations in order to grow the organic industry.

What is your organic background?

I have worked within the food and organic industry for longer than I can remember. I have worked within organic industry specifically for almost 10 years. I also was fortunate to work as an auditor and work in a manufacturing plant to see how it is on the front line as I would like to say. It has been great to work within the industry on many levels to appreciate all aspects of the wide world of the food industry.

What are your hobbies?

There is nothing like going on a boat in the summer in New England. I like to try and do that every weekend. Also, my daily walks with my dog has turned into quite the hobby and enjoyment. I also love to travel and experience as many cultures as possible.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I of course would love to be my dog Rosco because he is spoiled rotten. I also foster dogs and would love to be any of those lucky pups that find forever homes. If I could be an animal in the wild I believe it would be a seagull. I love the ocean and it would be great to have a birds eye view of the earth.

John Joseph

John Joseph

Certification Specialist - Handling

Why is organics important to you?

Organic production systems nourish us with processes as close to nature as possible. Agriculture is usually disruptive to whatever was growing there before.  Organics will help maintain and improve the natural resources into the future.  And as important as what is in organic food, it is equally important what isn’t.

What is your organic background ?

While attending California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo for Natural Resources/Forestry I began working for a small, organic farm in Cambria, CA where I learned how to produce and sell at farmer’s markets. The value of an arm’s length transaction across four feet of plywood is very satisfying. After journeys through biotech, internet technologies, a business degree, and database management I started in organic certification in 2005.  Since then I’ve also been involved in urban farming and food product development projects.

What are your hobbies?

Extreme gardening, cooking, home food preservation/canning, farmer’s markets, guitars, more guitars, and a minor-league ice hockey fan. #GoGulls!

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

Mantis Shrimp because they are beautiful and deadly.

Nicole Herrera

Nicole Herrera

Certification Specialist - Handling

Why is organics important to you?

It is fundamental for me that my relationship with the earth be mutually beneficial and nourishing, and I think a disconnect from this is just as bad for humans’ well-being as it is for the earth’s. This informs many aspects of my life, including feeding my family, and I love partnering with others who value the same.

What is your organic background ?

I worked in Organics several years ago, and after traveling internationally while educating my kiddo, I am thrilled to be back.

What are your hobbies?

Exploring, dancing, my plants, languages, learning, and anything in nature. I can often be found in good company doing science experiments, trying to figure out video games, and watching documentaries about ancient history or natural science.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I am fascinated by crows because they are brilliant and mysterious. They also have a great view that I would love to share.

Rosa Herrera

Rosa Herrera

Administrator

Why is organics important to you?

Organics is important to me because preserving our planet for my children’s future is key. Not only does the organic certification ensure there are no harmful chemicals in our food, it also guarantees against harmful chemicals in the soil.

What is your organic background ?

I’m certified in Computerized Accounting, after starting my family I realized I needed something less stressful, thus my journey with Organic Certifiers began. I started in administration and eventually was given the opportunity to take on more responsibility. I am now the Administrator and I help facilitate the Annual Renewal process among other duties. I love working with both our staff and clients.

What are your hobbies?

I love to run, I like how your body can work in unison to get you across the finish line. Plus,  it’s the only time I’m not thinking about my “to do” list.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be an octopus, imagine all the things I would accomplish in one day with the extra tentacles.