Registering an Organic Farm in Portugal

Bureaucracy is complicated in Portugal, and we have just been through our annual inspection as an organic farm. This time I made some notes on what has to be done each year, and I hope this helps you understand what needs to be done if you go organic.

Organic homestead
Our Organic homestead

Registering an organic farm in Portugal

  1. Complete the 50h organic farming course or the 200h sustainable agriculture course. If you do the latter, your subsidies will increase. I found the 200h course excellent; it took me seven months to complete. It included an organic farming module, sustainable agriculture module, fertilising module, irrigation module, soil module and plant protection module. Most of what is included are very similar to what we learn in permaculture. e.g. planting on contour, creating diversity and improving soil for future generations. On completion of the course, the annual subsidies doubled, and on completion of an organic licence, it doubled again.
  2. Register your farm for an activity. This is quickly done, and the result is having a document called a REAP – Novo Regime do Exercício da Atividade Pecuária. You can follow the process I have advised on registering sheep to get this done
  3. Notification to DGARD of the activity on your land
    1. Click this link to submit your notification
    2. The above notification is straightforward and there is even a document to help you do it. It should match your activity in your IE document from IFAP and your organic farming licence.
  4. If you haven’t already, stop buying anything that does not say BIO (organic) next to it on the receipt. This includes manure, compost, seeds, feed, cleaning products, fertilisers and whatever else you buy.
  5. Create a contract with Sativa or another agency that performs checks on organic farms
  6. Have your first inspection from Sativa.
    1. you will need to pass a soil test to become an organic farm
    2. If you don’t want to pay for a soil test or your farm was not previously organic, you can start your organic licence, but you may not sell anything as organic until you have passed a period of conversion. The period varies for different cultures.

Annual organic Farm inspection

When you are inspected, you will need to provide the following documentation to the inspector. It will depend upon which inspector comes. When the inspector calls you for the inspection date, ask him if he wants this emailed before the inspection or if it should be printed.

  1. Notification to DGARD of the activity on your land
    1. Click this link to submit your notification
    2. The above notification is straightforward and there is even a document to help you do it.
    3. This should match the list of activities in both the IE document in IFAP and your organic farming licence
  2. Provide necessary documents in digital format to the organic farming inspector.
    1. DGARD notification as per part 1
    2. Provide your IE and PE documents from the IFAP Portal. Both these can be found in. O Meu Processo » Superfícies
    3. If you have animals
      1. Provide your SNIR document from the IFAP Portal. This list of your animals only applies if you have animals.
      2. Provide your livro de medicamentos
    4. Provide your REAP – Novo Regime do Exercício da Atividade Pecuária. This you get when you first register your farm
    5. Provide your completed Cadeirno de campo. this is a form which you get for Sativa where you list everything you have done on your far,m including what you have planted, sold, fertilised, fed to animals, .etc
    6. supply supporting facturas that state BIO on for animal feed, seeds, manure or anything you have bought

What is an organic farm?

Soon I will write more details on what it means to be an organic farm, but a high-level summary is below. This article is more about how to register as an organic farm.

  1. It is a farm that operates under European regulations at this link.
  2. It passes an annual inspection
  3. It can sell products with an organic certificate

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