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Core solution

Integrated Farm Assurance for flowers and ornamentals

Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA) for flowers and ornamentals is a global standard for responsible farming practices at all stages of production. It is built on a holistic approach that covers the key topics of environmental sustainability, workers’ well-being, production processes, and traceability.

GLOBALG.A.P.’s flagship standard

What is Integrated Farm Assurance for flowers and ornamentals?

Developed by the industry, for the industry, Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA) for flowers and ornamentals is a global standard for the responsible farming of flowers and ornamentals. With requirements on topics such as soil and water management, plant protection, plant nutrition, biodiversity, environmental sustainability, and workers’ well-being, the standard allows producers to measure their progress, demonstrate their commitment to improving the sustainability of surrounding ecosystems, and improve the efficiency of their farm operations. Operational for over 20 years and continuously developed in extensive collaboration with sector stakeholders, IFA is tried, tested, and trusted around the world, with IFA-certified production processes for flowers and ornamentals covering more than 30,000 hectares annually.

World map identifying countries with Integrated Farm Assurance certified production processes for flowers and ornamentals

IFA for flowers and ornamentals at a glance

Flowers and Ornamentals 2, Farm, floriculture, flowers and ornamentals, covered production, production processes, greenhouse
Relevant for all

major types of production systems, from open field to greenhouses and hydroponics

Flowers and Ornamentals 1, Flowers and ornamentals, floriculture, products

to the production processes of cut flowers, house plants, trees, bulbs, perennials, turf, and more

Producer 1, Producer, farmer, stakeholder, supply chain, farm-level, smallholder
Certification options

for a variety of farm sizes and types, including smallholders and producer groups

Globe 3, Globe, worldwide, network, implementation
Implemented worldwide

with a global network of approved CBs and Registered Trainers

Document 1, Document, checklist, add-on
Easily combinable

with a range of targeted add-ons and supply chain solutions for flexible assurance customization

SDGs 1, Sustainable Devleopment Goals, SDGs, United Nations, UN, alignment
Supports the UN SDGs

and helps you demonstrate sustainability efforts

Which topics does IFA for flowers and ornamentals address?

IFA for flowers and ornamentals covers all stages of production, from nursery (propagation) through preharvest activities to basic postharvest handling. The standard has been developed together with sector experts in the technical committees and focus groups and underwent extensive public consultation as part of our process for standard setting . This ensures that IFA remains robust, realistic, and cost-efficient for producers while meeting the evolving demands of buyers.

Core topics in IFA v6 for flowers and ornamentals include:

  • Management and traceability

  • Soil, plant nutrition, and fertilizers

  • Water management

  • Integrated pest management

  • Plant protection products

  • Waste management 

  • Biodiversity

  • Energy efficiency

  • Workers’ health, safety, and welfare

  • Management and traceability

Discover more about how IFA helps you address challenges in the floriculture sector .

Who should use IFA for flowers and ornamentals?

IFA for flowers and ornamentals is available for the entire spectrum of producers worldwide, addressing a range of production systems from open field to greenhouses.

It offers certification options for both individual producers (single site and multisite producers) and producer groups, including smallholders. Producers can get certification in any country where a GLOBALG.A.P. approved certification body (CB) conducts audits.

We also offer primary solutions for producers who require a stepwise approach towards certification, as well as a portfolio of add-ons to core solutions for producers who require further assurance on specific topics.

How does IFA for flowers and ornamentals work?

  • Compliance with the standard requirements is audited annually by an accredited and independent third-party CB.

  • Producers can choose from any GLOBALG.A.P. approved CB active in the relevant country.

  • A successful CB audit results in a certificate valid for one year.

The certificate is issued at scope level (IFA for plants) and lists the applicable product categories individually (e.g., flowers and ornamentals, plant propagation material). Producers with multiple types of operations can therefore get certification for all of them through a single audit process.

IFA v6 checklists are generated digitally and are tailored to the producer’s specific production practices, eliminating any not applicable requirements. Our smarter, streamlined, and outcome-oriented approach also provides flexibility to producers in demonstrating compliance.

The standard is composed of principles and criteria (P&Cs). P&Cs are graded in three levels: Major Must, Minor Must, and Recommendation.


  • Fundamentals that set the foundation of a GLOBALG.A.P. requirement

  • Written in statement form

  • Describing the outcome to achieve


  • Methods that producers can use to demonstrate a principle to be true

  • Different ways to demonstrate compliance e.g., data, record of procedure

  • Evidence required for demonstrating that the outcome is achieved

Read more about the audit process and standard requirements .

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How is certification status verified?

Every producer registered in the GLOBALG.A.P. certification system is assigned a unique 13-digit GLOBALG.A.P. identification number (e.g., a GLOBALG.A.P. Number (GGN)). This number allows real-time verification of certification status in the GLOBALG.A.P. IT systems , upholding our rigorous transparency requirements throughout the supply chain.

Producers can control data access and privacy rights for audit reports, and the reports are not shared publicly or with third parties. This process is handled via your chosen CB.

Logo of the Floriculture Sustainability Initiative

IFA and the FSI 2025 ambition

IFA for flowers and ornamentals is the reference standard for good agricultural practices in the Floriculture Sustainability Initiative’s (FSI’s) “Basket of standards,” supporting responsible sourcing and the FSI 2025 ambition.

The FSI is a market-driven initiative that brings together members of the international floriculture sector to mainstream sustainability in the flowers and plants supply chain.

Infographic showing the four stages of the Integrated Farm Assurance continuous improvement plan at farm level

What is the continuous improvement plan?

IFA v6 for flowers and ornamentals introduces the need for a continuous improvement plan at farm level. This approach encourages measurable target setting that helps producers to improve the efficiency of their operations and achieve recognition for efforts to strengthen on-farm sustainability.

  • Plan: After analyzing current practices, data identifies areas that can be improved, and the producer sets measurable goals for improvement.

  • Do: Targeted measures are implemented in farming practices.

  • Check: Implementation is checked and progress reviewed at the annual CB audit.

  • Act: The continuous improvement plan is revised based on measurable progress and impact.

Sustainable Development Goals

IFA for flowers and ornamentals and the Sustainable Development Goals

The 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda , adopted by all UN member states in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future.

At its heart are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which call for global partnerships to improve health and education, reduce inequality, spur economic growth, tackle climate change, and preserve our oceans and forests.

Broadly considered, all GLOBALG.A.P. smart farm assurance solutions, partnerships, and capacity-building activities contribute to the SDGs , but for the flowers and ornamentals sector, the following SDGs are intricately embedded into the IFA standard.

SDGs addressed by IFA for flowers and ornamentals

Latest news

Image of a producer recording plant metrics in a field

29 November 2023

New environmental sustainability solution goes through first round of public consultation

The GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat held the first round of public consultation on the new environmental sustainability solution, marking a crucial step in the development of the upcoming solution through stakeholder collaboration.

Fruit and vegetables
Flowers and ornamentals
Environmental sustainability
Successful TOUR stop in Brazil

29 November 2023

GLOBALG.A.P. Secretariat and Paripassu hold successful TOUR stop in Brazil

October’s two-day TOUR stop Brazil saw 250 agriculture sector producers, retailers, and service providers in attendance to discuss their experiences with GLOBALG.A.P. standards.

Fruit and vegetables
Food safety
Environmental sustainability
Capacity building