OPMA Standards

There are four core standards to the Marketing Agreement:

  • Water Quality (CALGMA, in part)
  • Inputs and Composting (Compost NOP)
  • Traceback (CRF Title 21)
  • GHP (Good Handling Practices)

Other Standards:

  • OPMA also uses the Harmonized Audit (in benchmarking now for GFSI).
  • OPMA will certify your farming operation in accordance with the California or Arizona Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement standards for compliance.
  • OPMA will certify your farming operation in accordance with any FDA rule for compliance.
  • OPMA is certified through Ceres Certifications, International (CCI) a licensed, ANSI and FDA approved certifying body under ISO 17065. CCI also certifies a number of other food safety schemes such as the GlobalGAP, Primus Standard and PrimusGFS. As a member of OPGMA you will receive member discount benefits – don’t forget to mention your membership.


OPMA certification is based on a robust standards and inspections program and the continuous improvement of these key items. Inspections are scored as “Pass” or “Fail” based on the presented standards.

The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act may change standards or information posted on OPMA websites. It is strongly recommended to check these sites often for updates to certification requirements, standards, or procedures.

Core Standards

The following Core Standards are applicable at all Tiers by all producers. These standards have been vetted by science, regulatory authority and required industry practices. All standards are applied by using a documented sound Risk Analysis procedure and robust agricultural practices.


Currently the standards, the application of these standards, and the entire certification process is in a “Beta” period (Test, Study, Adjust). This is necessary prior to Advisory Board approval. This period is expected to last through the 2011 season. All producers in this test period will be given appropriate consideration.

The Core Standards can be located by dropping down on the tab marking this page. Each substandard can be found using the same method. Those folks unable to pull down these standards can be provided a full list by writing OPMA, PO 848, Chippewa Falls, WI 54729. Listed are the following standards;



3. CORE STANDARD III: Traceability

4. CORE STANDARD IV: Good Agricultural and Handling Practices

Subsets of “Good Agricultural and Handling Practices”

Procedures for a Risk Analysis

  • What is the standard? What does the background on the standard tell us about its specific and implied intent?
  • What is the general situation for which the standard is being applied?
  • What are the facts bearing on the general and specific situation?
  • What assumptions are being made?
  • How is the standard being applied to this situation? Does the outcome match the requirement set by the standard? Can be situation be stated in one sentence as a single issue?
  • Is the outcome a major non-compliance (there is a total failure to comply) or a minor non-compliance (the standard is working but not in a truly robust fashion).
  • Is there a misunderstanding of the standard, an inability to comply or is there a lack of a resource which would assist in the application of the standard?
  • What is missing from this analysis? (Should a fact be missed restart the process from Step 3, above.)
  • What actions are necessary from this analysis?