National Organic Standards Board Powerless to Enforce Organic Standards on Cosmetics

At the NOSB semi-annual meeting in November it was “recommended” that the Secretary of Agriculture enact a regulation extending the NOP to personal-care products. To date the law has not changed: for personal-care products NOP compliance remains “voluntary” and the NOSB does not have the authority to enact regulations.

Should the Secretary accept the NOSB recommendation, any draft regulation must go through a public comment period. At the NOSB meeting the Deputy Administrator from the Department of Agriculture National Organics Program expressed reservation about the Department’s authority to adopt the NOSB recommendation and added that moving forward with regulation would not be a high government priority.

If the NOP were about to adopt a standard for personal care products, it likely would not follow the food standard, since that would make no sense. Schoon Scientific believes that trying to force the food standard on cosmetics is the reason for all the confusion. It makes no sense to do this and those that are pushing for this are mostly marketers who want to dupe the public into thinking their products are safer than their competitors.

The USDA has clearly and repeatedly stated that “Organic” doesn’t mean safer, better or higher quality… it is simply a preference.