September 14, 2006
Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI), a nonprofit
publisher and information service for organic growers,
introduced an online, organic seed listing service this month.
Once filled, the OMRI Organic
Seed Database will provide accurate information on the
availability and supply of hundreds of certified organic seed
varieties. The web address is:
“Our goal is to offer growers and certifiers a single place to
find supplies of organic seed,” explains Dave DeCou, OMRI
executive director and project manager for the seed list. “We
hope this information will lead to greater sales of organic
While the USDA organic rule requires that organic growers plant
organic seed, it also contains an exemption allowing non-organic
seed to be used if organic seed is not commercially available.
The OMRI Seed Database will provide growers a place to search
for available organic seed and also offer certifiers a tool to
verify whether organic seed is available in a particular
“As a nonprofit with a history of serving organic growers and
certifiers with information on materials suitable for use in
organic production, we are in a uniquely well-suited position to
develop this new service,” elaborates DeCou. “We are recognized
in the organic growing community as a trusted source of
The OMRI Organic Seed Database is entirely online. Seed
suppliers will be able to manage their listings through the
website interface. OMRI staff will verify that the supplier is
certified as a handler or grower of organic seed. New listings
will appear online once certification is verified.
Fees are designed to be reasonable. There is a $25 annual
company charge, plus fees based on how many varieties the
company wishes to list. Suppliers will be able to pay using a
secure online payment service. Listings are for a 12-month
period and can be updated at anytime.