GET CERTIFIED AS A

River Friendly Farm

CERTIFICATION PROCESS

Applications are accepted year-round. The certification process typically takes between two and six months to complete.

Certification is currently only being offered to farms in northern and central New Jersey and in the Cumberland River Basin.


1. COMPLETE THE ONLINE APPLICATION

River Friendly Farm Certification evaluates farms based on the techniques and practices employed in five categories:  

 

  • Soil Loss Management

  • Nutrient Management

  • Pest Management

  • Stream Corridor Management

  • Irrigation Water Management

 

Applicants apply online or complete a paper version of the River Friendly Farm Application Form. If you have any questions, a member of our staff can assist you.

Complete online application

2. RFF CERTIFIERS REVIEW APPLICATION

Local Certified River Friendly Farm Certifies will review your application. If needed, they may ask for additional clarification information.

  • If the certifier believes the applicant qualifies based on the application, they will request the initial application fee and schedule an on-site assessment.

  • If the certifier believes the applicant will not qualify, the certifier will send the applicant information about BMPS and relevant cost-share opportunities. The certifier may or may not schedule a free on-site visit to discuss steps required to become RFF certified. 

3. INITIAL AUDIT

Our auditors make on-site visits to check the compliance of your systems and practices with the corresponding standards.

  • During the on-site inspection, the certification agent will discuss your application in-depth and tour your farm to ensure all relevant criteria are met. 

  • Farm visits typically take between 2 to 4 hours

4. CERTIFICATION DECISION

The agent will have the discretion to approve or deny certification.

  • If the certifier decides to certify the farm, they will notify the advisory committee.  The advisory committee will have seven days to notify the certifier if there are any known on-farm environmental violations that would preclude certification.  If the committee has no objections, the certifying would inform the applicant of their decision. 

  • If the agent makes the decision to deny certification, the agent must provide a written explanation outlining what changes would need to be waived in order for the certification to be approved at a later point.  In addition, agents will suggest a cost-share program and other resources to guide conservation improvements.  

5. AWARDED CERTIFICATION

Our team issues your certificate. At this point, you can display the logo associated with the standard on your labels.

If the certification is approved, the certification agent will upload your information to the website and will supply the applicant with a link to upload personal information.

6. CERTIFICATION MAINTENANCE

Recertification occurs every year online. Spot checks occur once every 5 years.

COST AND FEES

River Friendly Farm Certification costs $200 per year.  However, thanks to generous grant funding, we can offer the certification for free to producers within certain watersheds of northern and central New Jersey and in the Cumberland River Basin. Please reach out to see if you are within one of these areas.