Hey, we’ve got some great news! This is especially true for you folks who are dedicated to growing with and living an organic-focused mindset (that’s all of you reading this, right?). We want you to know that three of our long-time products—Worm Castings, Hardwood Bark Mulch and Cocodelphia—are now OMRI-listed.
What Is OMRI-Listed?
For those of you who are asking, “Wait, what does that alphabet soup stand for?”, let us clarify. “OMRI” stands for the Organic Materials Review Institute. This institution is an international nonprofit organization that determines which input products are allowed for use in organic production and processing. To be “OMRI-listed” means that product is allowed for use in certified organic operations under the USDA National Organic Program. OMRI isn’t the certifying agency for the organic products you find on shelves. What they do is verify the substances used in organic production. These include fertilizers, potting soils, pesticides, livestock health care products, processing aids, and a number of other products that organic farmers and processors use to produce and create their products.
You can imagine that to be a product allowed for use in certified organic operations, you’d be held to some pretty high standards. People, pets and livestock consume the end products of organic growing methods, after all. To be an approved OMRI input, a product needs to pass numerous and varied tests, including tests for heavy metals, elements that are often detected in native soils and growing media inputs.
What It Takes for OMRI Approval
Not just any product gets OMRI-listed. Each product going through the approval process must pass multiple tests, including tests for heavy metals and pathogens. OMRI-listed products must also be verified as non-GMO and non-irradiated, and contain no biosolids. And please note, it’s not us telling the OMRI organization about our inputs and them giving us a seal of approval. The OMRI folks are an independent third party verifier. They are doing all the verifications themselves to determine whether products are approved inputs for organic production.
Like we said, not just any product gets OMRI-listed. The organization find an average of 10-15% of all applications for OMRI-listing do not make it through the process, either because the applicant withdraws the application or the product ends up to be prohibited.
Cocodelphia in the Cannabis World
Our Cocodelphia Coconut Coir product being OMRI-listed is especially important for cannabis growers. For professional growers, having a product low in heavy metals is an important part for safety and testing protocols. This is especially true for professionals growing for medicinal marijuana segment of the cannabis industry.
Cannabis happens to be a “bioaccumulator.” That means the plant is an effective absorber of heavy metals from soils. According to Organic Mechanics’ former Vice President Eric Klein, who authored a piece on the need for regulating heavy metals in the cannabis industry for NJ.com, says these elements occur naturally within soils, but construction, mining, industrial waste disposal and other human activities can cause soils to be contaminated with heavy metals. Klein cites the use of quality nutrients and soils as one of several effective tactics for protecting cannabis consumers.
How to Use Them
Now that you know that Worm Castings, Hardwood Bark Mulch and Cocodelphia are newly anointed OMRI-listed products, here’s a reminder about a few of perks of their use:
Worm Castings: Helps retain moisture in the soil, creates an awesome soil structure for roots and encourages microbial activity around the root zone.
Hardwood Bark Mulch: Builds soil’s organic matter, introduces beneficial microbiology into the soil (from added compost) and helps your garden maintain soil moisture.
Cocodelphia: 100% professional grade, triple washed premium coconut coir with high cation exchange for improved fertilizer uptake.
Not Our First OMRI-Listed Products!
Did you know we had other products already OMRI-listed? Yep, we do! Five of our products have passed the test and have been on OMRI’s approved for organic growing list for over a decade. These products include: Premium Blend Potting Soil, Container Blend Potting Soil, Planting Mix Compost Blend, Seed Starting Blend and Rice Hulls.
Learn more about and shop for these and other Organic Mechanics products at www.organicmechanicsoil.com.