Annex 4: Sample risk assessment form
Control points
Comment on the situation found
Group member level/ farming
Are land titles/property rights/leasing rights clear??
Are responsibilities clearly defined authorizing the group
member to take the decisions needed for organic farming
Is it common that growers also manage other fields not covered
by the group’s ICS?
Are the crops rotated on changing fields? If this is the case, how
is it ensured that organic standards and especially conversion
requirements are met?
Are prohibited inputs (pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers) easily
available for group members (in the region, in the villages)?
Are there any programs or advisory services to promote
agrochemicals to the growers (in the region, in the villages)?
Is it common practice in the group’s region to farm without the
use of prohibited substances (pesticides, herbicides, and
fertilizers) – particularly for the type of crops grown by the
Is there a history of switching from organic to conventional
farming practices based on market price?
Are there any other crops in the group’s region that are highly
threatened by pests or diseases and difficult to manage
Do group members cultivate any other crops conventional for
local sales or home-consumption using prohibited substances?
It there a risk that these conventional crops are grown in organic
fields (as intermediate crop)?
How long have growers in the group’s region be farming
Are the type of crops grown by the group suitable for organic
farming in that region?
Is the equipment, e.g. for spraying, used for conventional as well
as for organic treatments?
Could organic fields be contaminated by drift of chemicals from
neighboring conventional fields?
Could organic fields be contaminated by ground or irrigation
water from conventional fields?
Do group members store agrochemicals and is there any risk that
the certified products might be contaminated?
Are there any sources of contamination (industries, mines,
highways and others) in the group’s region?
Are there any required public pest and disease control measures
(e.g. malaria, citrus cancer) in the group’s region?
Are GMO seeds used in the group’s region?
Other …..
Internal control
Is the distance between production units manageable for
internal control and product purchase?
Do ICS staff have the required means (e.g. finance,
infrastructure, means of transport) to manage the ICS and realize
internal control?
Are the number of internal inspectors appropriate for
implementing the ICS considering the number of group
members, location, distances and complexity?
Are responsibilities defined in such a manner that
conflicts of interest can be excluded?
Other ….
Buying, transporting, storing, processing
Is there a big price gap between organic and conventional
product? (Risk that group members buy from conventional
neighbors and sell the product as organic)?
Does the purchase center only buy products from approved
group members, and if applicable, that different qualities
(organic in transition, conventional) are kept separated?
How are purchasers paid? Is their payment dependent on
quantity purchased?
Is commingling of products of different quality at the purchase
center and storage facilities managed and prevented?
Have all the staff responsible for handling of organic products
been trained on the specific requirements?
Are ingredients and auxiliary substances used for processing
provided to, and approved by the certifier?
Are organic product managed to prevent contamination with
agrochemicals during storage? (pest control during storing)
Are transport, equipment and storage facilities treated with
prohibited substances (even not export container)?
Other …
Risk Level: H= high risk; M= medium risk, L=low risk
Example for the evaluation of identified risks and preventive measures taken:
Critical control point and situation found
Organic production of the home consumption crops is
difficult (requires more efforts) and some of the group
members still grow vegetables for local sales
conventionally, and store agrochemicals in their house
that are used in their vegetable garden.
Organic treatments are organized by the group and
sprayed by airplane. The planes are also used by
conventional farms. There is a risk that residues of
conventional products remain in the airplane and
contaminate the organic field
Many group members have conventional neighbors
who spray with backpack sprayers. In the
Preventive measures
 intensify training of group members on organic cultivation
methods also for home consumption crops
 more frequent field advisor visits with focus also on
 inform group members about danger of agrochemicals for
their health and for the environment
 Additional (unannounced) internal inspections in order to
guarantee that no prohibited products are used in the
organic fields.
 Tanks of the plane are always cleaned at least three times
before use. Ask certifier which products to use for cleaning
 Develop an ICS form to document the cleaning and list of
substances used for cleaning.
ICS needs to assure that buffer zones are defined and
managed by the group member.
neighborhood or region conventional land is treated by  Conventional neighbors are informed about the buffer zone
airplane. There is certain risk of contamination of the
and to avoid spraying in those areas.
organic fields, esp. from aerial spraying
 If neighboring fields are treated by airplane, there needs to
be a buffer zone of at least 50 meters.
 The internal inspectors need to be instructed to specifically
verify the situation
Some group members store old agrochemicals which
 The internal inspector needs to be instructed to check the
had been a gift during electoral campaign 5 years ago
products stored by each group member on the internal
inspection form
 All old products must be removed immediately. A solution
has to be found as to what to do with them.
The irrigation water comes in canals directly to the
 Check during internal inspection.
fields. And there is a risk that overflow water from
conventional parcels flows back into the irrigation
Sometimes farmers may receive “organic” products
 Farmers receive a clear list with allowed inputs, all others are
distributed by government.
prohibited. Advisors shall stress that during visits.
Government is presently promoting organic through
 Ensure good contact with government extension programs.
extension agents and advisors, but this may change.
Keep informed on possible changes in strategy of the
There is a certain risk that farmers could sell
 Inform farmers on consequences of such a behavior.
conventional products from other farms as organic, and  Implement spot checks during harvesting.
one such case occurred.

Annex 3: Sample risk assessment form