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CT NOFA > TOPP (Transition to Organic Partnership Program)

TOPP (Transition to Organic Partnership Program)


What is TOPP?

CT NOFA is proud to be a Core Partner in the Northeast Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP). This community agreement is sponsored by the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service and will continue through October of 2027.

The Northeast/Mid-Atlantic Regional Partnership for Organic Transition is a coalition of organizations providing technical assistance and wrap-around support for transitioning and existing organic farmers. This Regional Partnership serves producers in Pennsylvania, Washington DC, Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland and Delaware.

The Northeast/Mid-Atlantic Regional Partnership for Organic Transition is supported through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP). TOPP is a program of the USDA Organic Transition Initiative and is administered by the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) National Organic Program (NOP).

who benefits from topp?

The Northeast/Mid-Atlantic Regional Partnership for Organic Transition:

  • Connects transitioning farmers with farmer mentors
  • Hosts community building opportunities, including workshops and field days
  • Creates technical assistance resources
  • Supports the organic workforce through training and education
  • Helps producers overcome technical, cultural, and financial shifts during and after organic certification
  • Promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion in the organic sector

how to take part

CT NOFA will be connecting paid organic certification mentors to mentees for one year. The mentorship program is expected to commence in the 4th quarter of 2023. CT NOFA staff will assist with helping mentee farmers to navigate the organic certification process. 

We welcome partner non-profit or public organizations to work with CT NOFA to provide community building opportunities, technical assistance, train-the-mentor support, and workshop and field day activities covering topics including organic production practices, certification, conservation planning, business development, regulations, and marketing.

ct nofa is currently accepting applications for:

Mentor Farmers

who have at least 3 years' organic farming experience working directly on farm production, business management, and/or organic certification. This could include experience as an employee, manager, or owner of an organic operation or someone with at least 3 years experience with organic certification.

Mentee Farmers

who have at least 2 years' experience owning or operating a farm including owners, employees, or managers. If you are planning to transition an operation to organic, in the process of transitioning an operation to organic, and/or starting a new certified organic operation, we welcome you to apply to join our mentorship program.

Technical Experts

who are interested in helping provide guidance on specific topics, skills, or areas of interest to farmers who are transitioning to organic methods.

Learn More

Interested but would like to learn more about the program? Contact us for more information or with any questions you may have.

Please note that application does not guarantee acceptance.