Following discussions by the UK Certification Body Technical Working Group we will be changing from 1/1/2021 the conversion period required for brought-in non-organic perennials.  This is will ensure consistent implementation of the Regulations by all UK Control Bodies and encourage propagators to certify as organic, therefore increasing the availability of organic transplants.

Under the EU Organic Regulations EC 889/2008 and 834/2007, there is no allowance to plant non-organic transplants into organic land. However, in recognition of the lack of availability of organic perennials in the UK, Control Bodies shall allow non-organic perennials to be planted into in-conversion or organic land with prior derogation, when there is no organic or in-conversion available, but from 1/1/2021 they must undergo a conversion period. Any non-organic perennials planted into in-conversion or organic land from 1/1/2021 will be subject to a 3 year conversion period before their crops can be sold as organic, although after 12 months of conversion the crop can be sold as in-conversion. This will apply to all perennials including fruit bushes, fruit trees, ornamentals and strawberry transplants. 

Within the EU Organic Regulations there is scope to allow use with prior derogation of non-organic seeds or vegetative propagating material when there is no organic available. However, unlike for perennial transplants, no conversion period will be applied. Types of vegetative propagating material include: rhizomes, bulbs, tubers, corms, suckers, root stocks and scions (before they are grafted), onion sets, asparagus crowns, rhubarb crowns and strawberry runners before they are potted on.

There remains no allowance for non-organic annual transplants to be planted into in-conversion or organic land.


Defra have released the 2019 statistics on organic farming, these statistics show land use and livestock numbers.



It has been confirmed that the percentage inclusion rate for organic seed within grass and forage seed mixes to be sown in 2021 will be a minimum of 70% organic seed.  70% organic mixes can be sown without prior derogation, but derogation must be gained prior to your annual inspection taking place. 

For farms that purchased 50% organic forage mixes before 18/11/2020 but were unable to sow the mix before the end of 2020, these mixes can be used for spring sowing in 2021, but derogation must be gained prior to sowing.

Seed companies with stocks of 50% organic mixes left in stock after 18/11/2020 will be required to re-blend the mixes to a minimum of 70% organic inclusion before sale.



Seed Derogation

For 2020 only the percentage of organic seed within grass and forage seed mixes has changed, due to a shortage of seed caused by the 2018 drought.

Derogation required prior to purchase

Derogation before inspection 

No derogation required

Less than 50% organic grass & forage mixes

50% - 99% organic grass and forage seed mixes

100% Organic Seed

Less than 70% organic arable silage and wholecrop mixes

70% - 99% organic arable silage and forage seed mixes


100 % non-organic seed



Seed mixes to be sown during 2021 must contain a minimum of 70% organic seed, even if purchased in 2020.