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SOE: Importing and Exporting

January 2, 2024

SOE: Importing and Exporting

Leading up to the implementation of the Strengthening Organic Enforcement (SOE) Rule approaching on March 19, 2024, this article is in relation to the regulation change regarding: Importing and Exporting.
Did you know?
The USDA National Organic Program’s Strengthening Organic Enforcement (SOE) Rule requires all organic imports entering the U.S. to be declared as organic and must be linked with an NOP Import Certificate. This modification aims to enhance traceability and oversight of organic imports.
Who is eligible to apply for an NOP Import and Export certificate?
To request an Import/Export certificate, the applicant/operator must hold organic certification compliant with the SOE regulations. The certificates must identify the certified organic operator.
What is the cost & turnaround time for an Import/Export certificate request?
Your request can be processed based on your requested need (Range from 24 hours – 5 days). For further details of the cost and turnaround times view our Organic fees under the section NOP Import/Export Certificate and Service Description.
What type of Certification is required and what type of documentation is needed?
Transaction Certificate
If the product is leaving the United States and the final destination is Chile, Costa Rica, European Union, Northern Ireland, Mexico, United Kingdom of Great Britain, Sweden, Switzerland or other countries.


(These certificates are also referred to as a Certification of Inspection (COIs), TM-11, COI, NOP Import Certificate, etc.)
Import Certificate
If organic products are entering the United States from other countries they must enter the United States accompanied with an Import Certificate.
Submit to PAO:
Submit to PAO:
  • Import Certificate & Instructions on completing the Certificate form
  • Records: Identify products as organic on all export documents, including but not limited to invoices, packing lists, bills of lading, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection entry data (phytosanitary certificate).
  • International Markets Addendum
PAO will receive and review the request, if all the necessary information is complete PAO may issue the Transaction Certificate in the USDA Organic Integrity Database or in the Countries Trade systems.


*If an organic product is leaving the United States and the final destination is Japan or Taiwan it must be accompanied by the TM- 11 Form.
PAO can issue an NOP Import Certificate for a single transaction or, in specific instances, for a set time period. Time frame certificates would encompass a designated quantity of product shipped within that period. This provision for time frame certificates can ease administrative tasks for operations with frequent shipments, particularly beneficial for fresh produce transported from Canada or Mexico by land. Please contact PAO to discuss your options for time frame certificates.
Primus Auditing Ops Organic Trainings
Be aware of the Organic trainings being offered through our Training Center.
Our calender and Registration information can be found here.
Addtional Information
For Information on all SOE updates, click here.
If you have any questions regarding Strengthening Organic Enforcement, please do not hesitate to contact us at: or 805-623-5248.