Organic botanical ingredients: What are quality criteria?

Published On:
March 07, 2019

The organic world market is increasing every year. This growth is driven by the increasing confidence of consumers with regard to certified organic products.

Let’s take a look at the quality criteria of an organic botanical ingredient.


Organic botanical ingredients: production covered by European regulations


The production and marketing of organic botanical ingredients are covered by European regulations since 1991. There are currently two regulatory texts in force:  

  • A framework regulation which highlights the general principles of organic production: regulation 834/2007 of the Council of 28 June 2007;
  • An application regulation which highlights the measures be taken in the field: regulation 889/2008 of the Commission of 5 September 2008.

These regulations ensure compliance with the fundamentals of organic farming:

  • Sustainable management of agriculture;
  • Comply with natural balances and biodiversity;
  • Obtain high quality products based on procedures which are not harmful to neither the environment nor to human health, nor animals or their well-being.

Read more about Natural Origins' commitment to fair trade ingredients


Strict specifications for organic botanical ingredients


The production of an organic botanical ingredient must comply with very precise specifications, which are based on a series of measures focused on maintaining natural balances. The following is an overview of the criteria defined in the European regulation for the production of organic ingredients:

  • A period of several years for the conversion of a cultivation area to organic farming;
  • The preservation and development of life and the natural fertility of the soil, particularly based on crop rotation or the spreading of composted organic materials;
  • Excluding synthetic chemicals based on alternative protection methods (ex. biocontrol);
  • Ban on genetically modified organisms (GMO);
  • Strict standards for cleaning and disinfecting buildings and installations, including organic botanical ingredients storage areas.

A controlled supply chain


Compliance to specifications of organic farming is verified by a certification body. The regulation requires an on-site inspection at least once a yearRandom checks can also be added to this annual inspection.

The certification body carries out a physical and documentary check. Producers must keep their plant production booklet up to date including many details on the production conditions of their organic botanical ingredients.

At Natural Origins, we have decided to offer additional guarantees to our partners. All batches of organic botanical ingredients sourced by our teams are systematically controlled. They are thoroughly analysed by an independent French laboratory. You can find all of these organic botanical ingredients on our e-platform.


You would like to know more about the quality criteria of an organic botanical ingredient? Feel free to download our ebook on organic ingredients.


  • European regulation 834/2007 of the Council of 28 June 2007. EU Official Journal – L-189 of 20 July 2007.
  • European regulation 889/2008 of the Commission of 5 September 2008. EU Official Journal– L-250 of 18 September 2008.

Herbal&Teas, Spirits Industry, Nutraceutical Industry

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Nadine Bromberger

Nadine Bromberger

Purchasing Manager

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