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Submitting a Complaint

COABC strives to ensure that all complaints are handled fairly and consistently and that corrective action is taken as necessary.


For False Labeling Complaints

The term "organic" is a protected label in British Columbia. That means products marketed as organic in the province must be certified, either through a provincial or federal program. Uncertified operators whose products carry the organic label could face penalties including fines.

Examples of misuse of the organic label by an uncertified operator include:

  • Using the word "organic" in marketing materials
  • Using the BCCOP checkmark logo and/or the Canada Organic logo

If you've discovered a person or company who is falsely marketing their products as organic in British Columbia, here's what to do.


For other complaints regarding the COABC, a Certification Body, or an operator certified under an accredited Certification Body

All complaints must include documentation of evidence and be received in writing by the COABC office (email contacts are listed below). The COABC will be in touch within 3 weeks and will acknowledge the validity of the complaint and whether or not it will be investigated.

Complaints against the COABC

Complaints against the COABC, including staff, contracted personnel, evaluators and Accreditation Board members with respect to their duties, will be directed to either the COABC President or Accreditation Board Director, depending on the nature of the complaint.

Contact: info[at]certifiedorganic.bc.ca

Refer to: PL59B Complaints against the COABC

Complaints regarding a Certification Body or an operator certified by an accredited Certification Body

Complaints regarding a Certification Body (CB) or an operator certified by an accredited CB should initially be directed to the relevant CB. A complaint will be directed to the COABC Director of Accreditation only when the CB does not satisfactorily handle the complaint or referral to the CB is not considered appropriate.

Contact: accreditation[at]certifiedorganic.bc.ca

Refer to: Sections 1 & 2 of PL59A Complaints against COABC Accredited Certification Bodies and Operators



Read BCOG Spring 2020