Code of Ethics - Organic Trade Association
Organic Trade Association
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Code of Ethics


The OTA Code of Ethics is a statement of the common values of this Association.  It is to guide us in the decisions we make as businesses and individuals and to assist us with our responsibilities to the principles of organic agriculture and ethical business practices. 


OTA’s Mission

To promote and protect the growth of organic trade, to benefit the environment, farmers, the public and the economy.

OTA’s Vision

Organic products are a significant part of everyday life, enhancing people’s lives and the global environment.


OTA’s Core Values

We, as members of OTA,

  • Have established organic trade on a foundation of common organic standards

  • Work in harmony with the environment, promoting sustainability

  • Recognize the need for organic agriculture to be economically viable

  • Work to protect the diversity of life

  • Recognize the interdependence of all parts of the organic community

  • Understand that organic farms are the foundation of the organic industry

  • Seek out and use whole system approaches to agricultural and business practices

  • Support the human right to knowledge and choice in the marketplace

OTA Code of Ethics

As members of the Organic Trade Association, we have responsibility to our industry, customers, people and the Association. We strive to:

  • Maintain the highest standards of business conduct by using only legal and ethical means in all business activity.

  • Actively promote and encourage the highest level of integrity within the organic industry.

  • Cooperate in every reasonable and proper way with other Association members and work with them in the advancement of the organic agriculture and the organic industry.

  • Be fair and respectful to employer(s), employees, associates, competitors, customers, the public, and all business or professional relationships.

  • Adhere to honesty in advertising and in all representations to the public concerning organic agriculture and products.

  • Support the establishment of an entire production, processing and distribution chain which is both socially just and ecologically responsible.
  • Commit to the development and use of the highest standards and practices for organic production, processing and handling, using OTA’s American Organic Standards as a guidance document.

  • Observe all state or provincial and federal laws and international regulations pertaining to organic production, processing and handling. 

  • Represent OTA, its positions, policies and members without rancor. Support the Association, and the industry, by participation and contributing to effective change.
  • We are in agreement with OTA’s Core Values and declare that we will make every effort to uphold this Code of Ethics.

All OTA members must sign this form. If there are legal or other restrictions that prohibit an OTA Associate Member (non-voting) from signing this form, a signed statement declaring your agreement with OTA’s Core Values and the intentions expressed by the Code of Ethics, and the constraints imposed on you must be sent with your membership application or renewal. 

Revised March 2006 

2014 Annual Fund

Research and Promotion 2012