SANTA CRUZ, — California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF), the largest organic certification and trade association in California, has announced its launch of a revised edition of their "Find-A-Farmer" search engine.

The search engine, located on the CCOF Web site at www.ccof.org, allows consumers, retailers, and other interested organizations and businesses to easily find a CCOF certified organic farmer, processor, handler, packer, or retailer. In addition, visitors can search for CCOF certified organic crops, livestock, processed organic products, and organic business services.

Visitors to the site can find desired information by using one or more of nine search categories: products, business name, owner/manager, address, city, state, county, sales method, or international accreditation. There is no charge to use the search engine.

According to Helge Hellberg, CCOF marketing director, the organization’s goal is to re-establish a dialogue among consumers, organic farmers, and retailers:

“CCOF certifies over 70 percent of the organic agriculture in California, and our search engine offers consumers and other interested parties an easy access to a large array of certified organic farms and products, which results in greater exposure and more marketing opportunities for our certified members in return," Hellberg said.

CCOF, founded in 1973, is a non-profit third party organic certifier and the largest certifier in California with more than 1,000 members and 100,000 acres certified organic land. CCOF promotes and supports sustainable agriculture in California and worldwide through programs to increase awareness of and demand for certified organic product as well as advocacy for governmental policies that protect and encourage organic agriculture.

CCOF is a member of the Organic Certifiers Council (OCC), the Organic Trade Association (OTA), and IFOAM, the International Federation of Organic Agricultural Movements. CCOF is also accredited by IFOAM, and by USDA for ISO 65 Guide compliance. CCOF members export their products to markets in North America, Europe, and Asia.