(March 14) Within six months of adding a full line of organic vegetables to its processing operations, Field Fresh Foods Inc., Los Angeles, became certified in late January through California Certified Organic Farmers, Santa Cruz.

The company is certified for 10 to 12 organic commodities including carrots, celery, cabbage and romaine, said Fritz Stelter, a co-founder of the processor.

The company distributes its products to foodservice, wholesale and retail customers in Southern and Northern California, Arizona and Nevada, Stelter said.

He didn’t say how much volume of organic produce he expects to ship. But he said that while the category represents a small portion of his current business, he expects it to become the company’s fastest growing category.

Jake Lewin, director of marketing and international programs at CCOF, said the procedure of certifying organic processing companies is just as thorough as that of any other type of organic certification.

The trend of fresh-cut processors getting into organic value-added produce is growing, Lewin said.

The organization has certified about 10 fresh-cut companies and has received interest from others.

“A lot of fresh-cut companies are taking organic very seriously,” he said. “The ones who are capable of food safety typically are capable of organic compliance.”