- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 20, 2016

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - Producers and processors of organic food in South Dakota can now apply to have up to 75 percent of their certification costs reimbursed.

The state Department of Agriculture is now accepting applications from producers and processors interested in getting a reimbursement through a partnership between the agency and its federal counterpart.

Kimberly DeSchepper is a grant and loan specialist with the state Agriculture Department. She says annual certification costs are a major expense for new and established organic producers.

The reimbursement for costs paid between Oct. 1, 2015, and Sept. 30, 2016, won’t exceed $750.

Certification enables organic producers and processors to label and sell their products with a federal seal that assures consumers the products were produced using recognized organic methods.

Applications are due Nov. 15.

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