The Alliance for Sustainable Hydroponics CHiPS program intends to provide a way to end the continued misuse of the USDA Organic seal on hydroponic produce.
By creating a seal that can work as a wraparound or standalone certification program, current hydroponic growers who are certified organic do not have to immediately abandone their investment in organic certification. However, they can easily and inexpensively add the CHiPS seal to provide truthful and not misleading clarification for shoppers that their hydroponic produce is not grown in soil in the ground.
Ultimately, the goal of the CHiPS seal is to provide a meaningful and accurate seal that consumers can use to find Clean Hydroponic Produce in stores and restaurants, instead of having to guess if “organic” really means “organic”.
Three States of CHiPS
USDA organic certified but selling goods produced in a no-soil hydroponic system without notice to wholesale buyers and retail shoppers.
USDA organic certified and using the CHiPS seal to communicate that the goods were produced using a no-soil hydroponic system. This should always be a temporary state.
Clean Hydroponic Produce certified, and no longer using the USDA logo on hydroponic crops.
Extend the Harvest, Protecting Families
Hydroponic facilities have a number of benefits to small farms. Seedlings and bedding plants can be started early to get a jump on spring planting. Fall and winter crops can be grown throughout the winter for personal use or sale to the community. On a smaller scale, hydroponics can improve the economics of the family farm.
To learn about how large scale international corporations are using fake “organic hydroponic” to quash family farms who still grow crops in biologically active soil, read Dave Chapman’s commentary and analysis at www.RealOrganicProject.org.