Soil Association Certification has frozen its annual planned fee increase for all organic licencees in response to the Covid-19 outbreak.
The fee will be frozen until the end of September 2020 when it will be further reviewed given the rapidly changing circumstances.
The increase was due to come into effect from 1 April and would have applied to all organic schemes run by the certification body.
Soil Association Certification, which certifies over 70% of all organic products sold in the UK, have also suspended physical inspections and are currently reviewing the option of remote and desk-based inspections.
Clare McDermott, of Soil Association Certification, said: “In these unsettling times it’s vital that we come together to support all our licensees, especially our farmers and food suppliers.
"We hope this price freeze will allow our certified growers, producers and processors to continue the work they’ve been doing to secure a resilient and sustainable food system.
"Our licensees are crucial at this time and, despite increasingly challenging circumstances, we’re so grateful for the hard work they are putting in to produce and distribute our food.”
The fee freeze applies to any Soil Association Organic Certification including COSMOS and GOTS. It does not apply to any scheme that delivered on behalf of another partner, for example Red Tractor.