Posted on July 15, 2020 by Sustainable Food News

USDA rejects organic fruit exporter’s suspension appeal

Organic certifier QCS says Ecuador's Dialinspec did not adhere to settlement agreement

The USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) said Tuesday that an appeal by Dialinspec S.A., a major exporter of bananas, papayas, pineapples, plantains and other tropical fruits, over a proposed suspension has been denied.

The verdict was handed down in a recent decision by Bruce Summers, administrator of the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), which oversees the NOP.

Dialinspec, founded in 1998 and based in Machala, Ecuador, known as the “banana capital of the world,” was originally certified for handling by Quality Certification Services (QCS).

QCS had issued a suspension notice to Dialinspec after the company failed to comply with the terms of a November 2019 settlement agreement between the operation and the USDA.

Specifically, Dialinspec failed to submit a revised Organic System Plan (OSP) and related plans, i.e. organic trade plan, as well as provide relevant details on all producers from which Dialinspec purchases fruit, and all subcontractors and collection centers it utilizes, within 30 days of the settlement agreement execution.

Summers wrote in his decision that “evidence substantiates that Dialinspec breached the terms of the settlement agreement,”… and “can’t remain certified at this time.”

Summers said Dialinspec may apply for reinstatement at any time demonstrating correction of each noncompliance.

“While suspended, Dialinspec may not sell, label, or represent any product as organic,” the decision read.

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