Dr. Norm Leppla, University of Florida, recently reviewed available information on IPM certification programs potentially applicable to ornamental plant production. The results of this review are as follows:
- IPM certification generally appears to involve production sites rather than products. However there is a proliferation of IPM labels with questionable value to the customer.
- The new UF, IFAS Florida Organic Growers initiative might be adapted to commercial plant production but that is not its intended purpose: Mickie Swisher 352-392-2202.
- It is important for land-grant universities to support certification programs with research and education. Some universities are going farther by actually operating IPM certification programs. The states of Indiana and Montana have IPM certification programs run by state extension.
- Other industry and state partnerships are being developed for retailers and growers wishing to have IPM-labeled products. Wegmans supermarket chain approached Cornell University to form an early partnership, which certifies growers who market to Wegmans.
- The Audubon International Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary System might be adapted to commercial plant production but that is not its intended purpose.
- The IPM Institute of North America has been certifying food crop production but it is not clear how they actually certify a product as IPM.