ecologynr 5 // November 2011farming                                  AND      THE   STORY   OF THE  GLOBAL ORGANIC MARKET ...
BCS Öko-Garantie GmbH - the BCS - the Number 1 - for worldwide certification of organic products according to different st...
organic certifier Number 1  We extend our services permanently to serve you best:  1-Stop-Shopping with the certifier Numb...
DECember 2011 // NR 5                                                                            Table                    ...
introduction                              Denise Godinho            Peter Brul     Opening pathways for organic tradeFor m...
// Building Confidence:             USDA NOP visits Chinese                                                    products in...
Gunnar Rundgren                                                            Diversity is the driver                        ...
MARKET                                           ACCES    CLEARING    PATHWAYSReducing barriers to international trade    ...
economy  marketIFOAM is working together with two United Nations agencies,UNCTAD and FAO to harmonize organic standards. T...
of expanding organic agriculture world-       countries – including government orga-         vide norms-based, internation...
economy  marketobtained support from Norad for a follow-                                                     ter input, ha...
Gila Kriegisch     ONE WORLD     AWARD 2012:     RAPUNZEL     SUPPORTS     “FUTURE     MAKERS”12     5-2011 | ECOLOGY  FAR...
Events                                                                                                  OWA               ...
TrustinQuality.World-                                                                            Save time - combine our c...
The OWA is meant as                              a counter balance to the                                 day-to-day examp...
The sleeping organic giant       of Africa       Nigeria        mike Johnson        The global sales of organic products r...
Country reportgood’) is the core product. At present the    and less turgid, and are known as                             ...
Before theadvent of thepetroleumindustry inNigeria, theagriculturalsectorflourished tion. The majority of Nigerian farmers...
6           Expert           opinions     on reducing     trade barriers     EF asked six experts if we can reduce        ...
economy  market                                        Xingji Xiao, Director of the                      ment of the impor...
Dr David                                                                                Crucefix                    Dr Dav...
economy  market                  Volkert Engelsman, Founder and                          We should implement fast lane imp...
MARKET                                                                             ACCESSJon ManhireAsian regional standar...
T                                                                                                              standards  ...
The Drafting Group (DG) consists of repre-       worked well together in the developmentsentatives of government, industry...
standards  certification                                   MARKET                                   ACCESSEast Africa’s re...
Gunnar RundgrenOrganic agriculture has developed rapidly in East Africa and can nowclaim around half a million certified f...
standards  certificationtime a workshop on organic agriculture       EAOPS for admission to the IFOAM Fami-               ...
Certification oforganic cateringa need forharmonizationacross Europe?30   5-2011 | ECOLOGY  FARMING
standards  certificationThe consumption of organic food is increasing and people often paysignificant premium prices for o...
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
Ecology and farming
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Ecology and farming


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Ecology and farming

  2. 2. BCS Öko-Garantie GmbH - the BCS - the Number 1 - for worldwide certification of organic products according to different standards. BCS certifies more than 500.000 farmers and over 1.400 processors, importers and exporters worldwide. Our services cover all vital agricultural cultivations and the majority of all relevant processing industries. Several market leaders are among the companies serviced by BCS.
  3. 3. organic certifier Number 1 We extend our services permanently to serve you best: 1-Stop-Shopping with the certifier Number 1: BCS Please contact us with your requirements and wishes: or visit our website at: Yours sincerely, Peter Grosch, General Manager and Feben Dufera Grosch, Coordination Africa
  4. 4. DECember 2011 // NR 5 Table of Con tents economy & market organic&health The 8 story of the Global 15 ntibiotics A in agriculture: Organic Market Access Organic practices lead the way in A 30 need for harmoniza- project reducing their use. tion across Europe? Reducing barriers to international By Peter Brul Certification of organic catering. trade. By Diane Bowen. By Melanie Lukas, Carola Strassner 20 ix S expert opinions on Country report Anne-Kristin Løes reducing trade barriers 33 hich W organic labels do EF asked six experts if we can 16 igeria N consumers prefer? reduce trade barriers through equi- The sleeping organic giant of Africa. Consumer recognition and willing- valence and at the same time main- By Mike Johnson ness to pay for different labels. tain organic integrity in the markets. 36 he T organic sector grows By Meike Janssen By Diane Bowen Peter Brul in Korea 44 he T ifoam family of 10,000+ organic farms. standards By Gunnar Rungren global tool for multi-lateral A ­equivalence. standards certification By Joëlle Katto-Andrighetto 24 apid R progress in deve- loping an Asian regional organic standard. And more.... Asian regional standards. Editorial 5 By Jon Manhire News 6 events 27 uilding B an ‘African- Column by owned’ certification Gunnar Rundgren 7 12 apunzel R supports “Futu- standard Calendar 51 re makers” East Africa’s regional standards. One World Award. By Gila Kriegisch By Gunnar Rundgren 40 rganic O World Congress The IFOAM General Assembly. By Denise Godinho The Organic World Congress in South Korea attracted nearly 2000 participants from 76 countries exchanging knowledge, research and ideas. During the General Assembly of IFOAM, a new World Board was elected. EF reports on both events.
  5. 5. introduction Denise Godinho Peter Brul Opening pathways for organic tradeFor most organic operators seeking to get their Notwithstanding the challenges, much hasproducts onto international markets, the world been achieved. The GOMA Project (co-ordina-of certification can be a daunting one. Where ted by IFOAM, FAO UNCTAD) has contribu-there are no multilateral agreements, multiple ted to reducing trade barriers and, as the titlecertification can often be the only option. This of its 2012 conference indicates, is workingincreases the costs of accessing foreign mar- to help the flow of good organic products.kets and hampers the expansion of organic IFOAM’s Family of Standards draws the lineproduction and consumption worldwide. between standards that are organic and thoseAt a time when the contribution of small-scale that, after assessment, are considered to notfarmers to the world’s food security is increa- meet organic standards. Participatory Guaran-singly being recognized, the reduction of trade tee Systems (PGS) are slowly starting to bebarriers is crucial – to avoid these farmers accepted as a conformity assessment permit-being excluded from potentially remunerative ted under organic regulations. Earlier this yearvalue chains. they were recognized by the Brazilian Govern-The organic sector has always faced the dif- ment. IFOAM’s recently published policyficult task of keeping the delicate balance bet- briefing ‘How governments can support PGS’ween providing reliable assurance systems with highlights how governments can promote theformal rules that allow us to confidently classify growth of the organic sector thereby, creatinga product as organic, and – staying true to its jobs and improving livelihoods in the agricultu-roots – facilitating the inclusion of small-scale ral farmers in strategies for accessing glo- There are few sectors that can pride themsel-bal markets. ves on being as diverse the organic one. YetAnd never has the importance of preserving with this diversity comes responsibility: the res-organic credibility and achieving consumer ponsibility to not leave behind - in the pursuitloyalty, through a unified understanding of of profit – small scale farmers, the often mar-the values of the organic sector been greater. ginalised backbone of the world’s food supplyFraud, a multiplicty of eco-labels and standards system. We have a responsibility to continuallythat settle for sub-optimal requirements – see- raise the bar and improve organic practicesmingly to fast-track ‘organic’ results – all call and to share the lessons we learn with others,into question the viability of translating our four so that our successes can be multiplied.principles – ecology, health, fairness and care – In the organic world this job is never done. Butinto practice. we would not have it any other way. ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 5
  6. 6. // Building Confidence: USDA NOP visits Chinese products including spirulina (algae), tea, quick certification bodies and frozen vegetables, peanuts, soybeans, strawber- authorities ries and other fruits and vegetables. Several sam- ples of these products were collected, shipped The USDA National Organic Program recently published a and subsequently tested for pesticide residues report of its on-site assessment of four USDA accreditation and at the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service certification bodies and of a meeting with officials from the Cer- (AMS) Field Laboratory Services in North Caro- tification and Accreditation Administration of China (CNCA) that lina. NOP auditors also collected information was held in November 2010. regarding the regulatory and research system surrounding China’s growing organic industry. The report, which was largely favourable, des- The report states that the auditors found “a well- cribed assessments of the activities of the four educated and dedicated certifying agency staff European-based, NOP accredited, certification managing an organic certification system in a bodies operating in China (EcoCert S.A., BCS dynamic and complex environment”. The NOP Öeko Garantie GMBH, Institute for Marketeco- auditors also noted that the accredited certify- logy -IMO and Certification of Environmental ing agencies were competent, professional and Standards - CERES). NOP auditors visited the committed to protecting organic integrity. They Chinese branch offices of the four certifying noted that the certifying agencies carried out News agents and reviewed their certification and com- frequent inspections (both announced and unan- pliance activities. Inspections of certified opera- nounced), had robust pesticide residue sampling tions were conducted in the provinces of Fujian, programmes, competent inspectors, knowledge Hunan and Shandong, regions that produce or of multiple organic standards and organisatio- handle (i.e. process or export) a wide range of nal support and assistance from their parent // UN Accepts IFOAM In anticipation of the Right2Know Wilhelm believes that consumers Declaration to Label march from New York to Washington have the right to know whether the Genetically Modified D.C. October 1 – 16, representa- food they buy is genetically altered. Foods tives of the International Organic “20 percent of all manufactured foods Agriculture (IFOAM) presented a in the US contains genetically modi- Bonn/New York, special declaration to the United fied ingredients,” Wilhelm said. “We r October 1, 2011 Nations. The declaration requests that hope the Right2Know march will the United Nations commit all of its raise consumer awareness and influ- member nations to a world without ence US legislators to require that genetically modified foods and to labels indicate whether the product identify existing genetically modified contains GMOs.” The UN declaration foods on product labels. The UN was signed by Katherine DiMatteo, delegation included IFOAM repre- IFOAM president; Joseph William, sentatives, Joseph Wilhelm, founder IFOAM member; and Bernward of Rapunzel organic products and the Geier, NGO coordinator. It outlined force behind “the march;” and his the critical issues facing consumers employees.” Maria-Luisa Chavez wel- in the US and Europe. “Biased agri- comed the delegation and accepted culture policies, research and deve- the declaration on behalf of the UN. lopment agendas, and private sector She will pass it on to the President strategies favor short-term individual of the General Assembly – the main profits,” the declaration states. “This deliberative, policymaking and repre- (behavior) is to the detriment of the sentative organ of the United Nations. long-term sustainable use of natural6 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  7. 7. Gunnar Rundgren Diversity is the driver of organic evolution companies in Europe. They also noted some shortcomings, including approvals of incomplete Co Organic System Plans and inspection reports and inadequate procedures for reviewing labels. NOP issued notices of non-compliance for these lumn infractions, with the requirement that the certify- ing agencies demonstrate that they have underta- ken the appropriate corrective actions. In Beijing, NOP auditors met with govern- ment representatives from the China National In her closing speech for the IFOAM General Assembly, the President Kathe- Accreditation Administration (CNCA), which rine di Matteo called upon the organic movement and IFOAM to spend less of its is responsible for developing, promulgating and energy on standards and certification and more on market development, support to implementing state laws, regulations and rules farmers and alike. I couldn’t agree more. concerning certification and accreditation, inclu- It should be recognised that the development of standards and certification ding organic accreditation. At the conclusion of has been very useful for the organic sector and there are parts of the world where the meeting, the U.S. and Chinese announced this is a task that still needs priority. But we also have to realise that the whole their intention to initiate and exchange visits guarantee system takes an enormous amount of resources and energy, from pro- to learn more about the two countries’ organic ducers, from national organic movements and governments and from the interna- standards. tional community: resources and energy which could be used for market develop- ment or advising producers. The guarantee system ensures that each producer is The full report of the visit is available from the NOP audited every year. But who will ensure that all producers get an advisory visit, or Newsroom (July 2011) on the NOP website, www.ams. that producers are helped in their marketing efforts? The World Fair Trade Organization says that, “the certification systems have changed Fair Trade to such an extent that sales of products are the main measure of success instead of the welfare of producers.” Unfortunately, this tendency is not isolated to Fair Trade, but is also found within other social and environmental labelling systems, including organic ones. The developments of guarantee systems are almost uniquely driven by the actors who have a vested interest in them, suchresources for the benefit of all and as the standard-setters, certification bodies and accreditors; not by the constituentsis responsible for hunger, poverty, (consumers, producers and the trade) they are supposed to serve. There are dimi-climate change, and the destruction of nishing returns on the ever-increasing demands and procedures. For many yearshabitats and biodiversity.” Companies organic standards and certification systems have established credibility for theleading production of genetically sector. Yet all the procedures added over the past decade have added little extramodified foods include Monsanto credibility, while increasing the complexity and costs considerably. For sure, thein the US and BASF and Novartis- standards and certification systems need development, but development shouldSyngenta in Europe. Unless radical not always mean more procedures - it could also be the opposite: to get rid ofchanges to curtail GMOs are adopted unproductive procedures.worldwide and the subsidy for agri- Standardisation brings some benefits if it facilitates trade. Yet this is alsoindustry and monocultures is greatly somewhat contradictory to the values of the organic movement, which heraldsreduced, the future of organic farming diversity. There is surprisingly little understanding of this paradox within theand healthy, natural foods will be organic sector. Those who believe that standardisation is the right tool for evolu-threatened. IFOAM and its 750 mem- tion should read Darwin once more; diversity is the driver of evolution. Excessiveber organizations in more than 110 standardisation, especially when standards are prescriptive and not goal oriented,countries are dedicated to uniting and stymies development and will leave organic behind other, more flexible, concepts.leading organic farmers and busines- It was apparent at the Organic World Congress how many other huge challen-ses worldwide to work toward a safe ges the organic sector faces and that we need to be more outward looking insteadand natural food supply. of studying our navel. The challenge is to transfer the whole world’s food produc- tion system into something that is truly sustainable or, as I prefer to say ‘regene-More information under: rative’. To take on this challenge we need to be brave again, as the early pioneers were. We need to have visions and we need to look ahead, far beyondwww.IFOAM. the narrow constraints of the certified organic market place. ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 7
  8. 8. MARKET ACCES CLEARING PATHWAYSReducing barriers to international trade the story of the Global Organic Market Access project8 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  9. 9. economy marketIFOAM is working together with two United Nations agencies,UNCTAD and FAO to harmonize organic standards. This unique project,has drawn attention from academic researchers and others interested inthis novel form of international cooperation.Diane BowenA problemto tackleOrganic agriculture and trade offer a wayto strengthen agro-ecosystem servicesand present social and economic oppor- tifications for each of those countries. Iftunities to people, especially those in I have more market opportunities I couldsearch of food security and ways out of truly support my family.” Even for thosepoverty. One of the main challenges for producers and traders with sufficientthe continued development of organic resources to obtain multiple certifications,agriculture is that trade pathways have these requirements constitute an additio-become clogged with multiple organic nal cost, akin to an extra tax on organicstandards and technical regulations. products sold in these countries often trade, which conventional products areProducts that conform with one set of need to comply with the requirements of not subject standards and certification requi- these private systems.rements may also need to comply with Joining forces to find solutionsother organic standards and requirements The different requirements of both Ten years ago, IFOAM, the United Nationsin order to be traded internationally. As governmental and private sectors creates Conference on Trade and Developmentexamples, the US, Japan, Argentina, an obstacle to trade, which constrains (UNCTAD) and the United Nations FoodChina, India, Brazil, and soon, South organic market development and denies and Agriculture Organization (FAO) dis-Korea, all require imported organic pro- market access to many, including hund- covered that they had common concernsducts to be approved by certification reds of thousands of small-scale produ- about the problem, arising from some-bodies directly under their government’s cers in developing countries. According what different considerations. For IFOAMcontrol system to ensure compliance with to Charles Kimani, a vegetable producer the situation, which was rapidly worseningnational standards. In addition, markets in in Kenya, without these obstacles “I could as new standards and regulations camesome countries are greatly influenced by sell my organic products in more coun- into force, threatened the expansion ofprivate standards and certification, and tries without having to get different cer- organic agriculture and IFOAM’s mission ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 9
  10. 10. of expanding organic agriculture world- countries – including government orga- vide norms-based, international commonwide. UNCTAD, which promotes the inte- nic regulators and standardizing bodies, denominators which can serve as coregration of developing countries into the accreditation and certification bodies, references for assessing the equivalenceworld economy, saw that opportunities for traders, national organic movements and of production/processing standards andpoor producers to gain access to lucrative meta-organizations. In all the participants certification requirements among differentvalue chains were being compromised. came from 29 governments, eight inter- countries and even private organic gua-FAO, which sees organic agriculture as a governmental/international organizations rantee systems. “Use of these tools willpathway for increasing food security, rural and 25 private sector/civil society orga- lead us to more efficient and multilateraldevelopment, sustainable livelihoods and nizations. The ITF studied the problem, equivalence assessments,” notes Sophiaenvironmental integrity, saw that these looked at models for solutions from other Twarog, long-time UNCTAD member ofmarket access challenges were sup- sectors and recommended solutions. At both the ITF and GOMA Steering Com-pressing opportunities for agriculture to the end of 2008 the ITF issued six recom- mittees.achieve these goals. mendations for harmonization, equiva- lence and other forms of cooperation. One reason for the many successes ofIn 2002 these organizations organized a Most of these were related to government the ITF was the high level of coopera-conference on the subject, which came processes, although the involvement of tion between its members. The ITF, itsto be known as the Harmonization Confe- the private sector was also stressed, objectives and processes, attracted international attention, including being the subject of an academic dissertation onMore standards meta-governance and standard setting from the University of Utrecht, the Net-multiplies the task of herlands. This document concluded: “Byachieving equivalence combining a relationship building aspect of the process with an enhancement of the understanding of and importance attached to the harmonization and equi-rence. Held just after BioFach in Nurem- due to its strong representation in the valence agenda, the ITF has truly resultedberg, the conference drew two hundred Task Force. The ITF also went beyond in a paradigm shift”…. “Not only arespeakers and participants from govern- its original mandate and developed two people who co­ perated in the Task Force oment and intergovernmental agencies and practical tools to assist in the assessment more likely to also collaborate outside ofthe private sector. Participants urged the of the equivalence of organic standards the framework provided by the ITF (but)three organizations to organize a public- and performance requirements for cer- the atmosphere has changed more widelyprivate international task force to further tification (the organic equivalent of ISO- across large parts of the worldwide orga-explore the situation and recommend 65). The International Requirements for nic regulatory community.”solutions. The International Task Force on Organic Certification Bodies (IROCB) andHarmonization and Equivalence in Organic the Guide for the Assessment of Organic Implementing the toolsAgriculture, was born, thanks to financial Standards and Technical Regulations (also and recommendations: GOMAsupport from the Swedish International known as EquiTool), were launched by Although the partners were very satisfiedDevelopment Cooperation Agency (Sida), executives of IFOAM, UNCTAD and FAO with the results of the ITF, particularly thethe Government of Switzerland, and later, at the 8th and final ITF meeting. Generi- tools, they realized that the ITF projectthe Norwegian Agency for Development cally, these are called the ITF tools. After was like a company with a research andCooperation (Norad). The Task Force (ITF), some revision of EquiTool in 2011 adding development programme and a manufac-worked from 2003 until 2008, bringing an annex called the Common Objectives turing process, but lacking any marketing.together once a year, key private sector and Requirements of Organic Standards This was due to the limited timeframeactors from developed and developing (COROS), both of these tools now pro- of the project. So in 2009 the partners10 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  11. 11. economy marketobtained support from Norad for a follow- ter input, has enabled ACAO to restartup project, called Global Organic Market a stalled development process. It hasAccess (GOMA), to assist countries and/ already made considerable progress onor regions to implement the tools, the developing a text for a common orga-recommendations and to foster and nic regulation. This regulation includesspread the message of harmonization, standards for organic production and pro-equivalence and cooperation. Norad cessing, for organic certification bodies,generously agreed to the project before it force has now been established. These control and enforcement mechanisms and(or GOMA’s partners) knew exactly which activities are paving the way for potenti- import requirements. The next step in thecountries and/or regions would become ally establishing a Multilateral Agreement process will be the elaboration of indivi-involved in the project, although towards (MLA) within the region for mutual recog- dual country versions for notification tothe end of ITF’s existence it had conduc- nition of participants’ systems of regula- the WTO. The WTO notification processted workshops in Central America and ting organic labelling and other forms of includes an international comment period.Asia and identified prospective projects in cooperation. This will include countries Barring major objections from the WTOthose regions. that do not (yet) regulate organic label- application, the harmonized regulation ling and trade. If the MLA comes into should be ready for implementation in allDesigning an Asian framework being, Asian countries could be setting six countries by early 2012.for cooperation on organic labelling the pace for a more efficient multilate-and trade ral regional trade system – not only in Facilitating and assisting elsewhereBecause there had been high partici- the organic sector, but in general. The GOMA is also involved in promoting thepation from Asia in the ITF, GOMA set innovation shown by the organic sector recognition of the East African Organicout to explore if ITF might be implemen- in developing a cooperative model has Production Standard by the Europeanted there. It organized two workshops, caught the attention of the Trade and Union. This will enable East African pro-one in Nonthaburi, Thailand and the Agriculture Directorate of the Organization ducers to export to this important marketother in Shanghai, China, linked with of Economic Cooperation and Develop- by complying with a standard that isother organic events in these locations. ment (OECD), whose ITF representative regionally appropriate and understanda-These workshops were well-attended informally commented to the ITF Steering ble to them. (This initiative is explained inand recommended setting up a GOMA Committee, “you (ITF) are our heroes!” another article in this issue). Projects forAsia Working Group with the aim of training governments to implement theestablishing a Framework for Organic Complete harmonization in Central tools for equivalence assessments areLabelling and Trade within Asia (to cover America and the Dominican Republic also underway in Canada, The PhilippinesEast, South-east and South Asia). The All five Central American countries (Costa and Indonesia. New requests for informa-Working Group first met in Mumbai in Rica, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, tion, training and technical assistance onDecember 2010, and one of its main deci- Nicaragua and Panama), plus the Domi- harmonization, regional cooperation andsions was to develop an Asia Regional nican Republic are developing a harmo- equivalence have been received from theOrganic Standard (AROS) to serve as an nized regional organic regulation with South American and African continents,instrument/tool for establishing regional the support of GOMA and the Instituto although these cannot be acted uponequivalence – a regional interpretation of Interamericano de Cooperación Agricul- now, as the GOMA project is scheduled toEquiTool (see related article in this issue). tura (IICA). GOMA is providing financial end in May, 2012. At that time, the part-The Working Group also decided to use and some technical support to the project ners will be able to report that much hasIROCB for assessing the equivalence with a focus on facilitating stakeholder been achieved and more opportunities forof countries’ certification requirements involvement, while IICA is managing the harmonization and equivalence are on theand to establish a task force to look at project’s operations (meetings, accounting horizon.aspects of governmental supervision of and communications). GOMA financial Contact the GOMA project atcertification and enforcement. This task support and its encouragements for bet- ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 11
  13. 13. Events OWA Laureates Rachel Angola and Hans Herren. Both work on the ‘push-pull’ method for combating Events corn pests.The German organic food manufacturer Rapunzel and the internationalumbrella organization for organic agriculture (IFOAM) are opening thecall for nominations for the 3rd international “One World Award“. Wewelcome nominations for innovative ideas, projects and/or individualsthat contribute towards protecting the climate and the environment andpromote social responsibility. The nominations should incorporate thethree pillars of sustainability: ecology, economy and the social aspect.Joseph Wilhelm, German organic food pioneer and owner of Nominated individuals and projects should integrate the threeRAPUNZEL Naturkost GmbH, was inspired to establish a new areas of sustainability (ecology, economy and social commit-international award to support those whose actions reflect the ment) and should have made extraordinary achievements. In thereality that we all live in one world. The One World Award (OWA) first selection round, the OWA jury will screen all the nominati-honours and supports individuals and projects who give globa- ons and select five finalists. Each of these finalists will receive alization a positive dimension. OWA laureates show what is pos- 2,000 Euro cash award. In the second selection phase, the jurysible and what needs to be done in order to make our world a chooses the One World Award Laureate from the five finalists.better and fairer place. Joseph Wilhelm describes his motivation The OWA Laureate is presented with a coveted OWA statue andfor establishing the OWA. a cheque for 25,000 Euro.“This award was not only inspired by our company philosophybut it is also a matter that is near to my heart. I see the OWA ini- In addition to the One World Award, RAPUNZEL and IFOAM alsotiative as a counter balance to the day-to-day examples of injus- present a “Lifetime Achievement Award” – to honour outstandingtice, unfairness and conflicts in our world and I hope that it sends pioneers and/or individuals who have dedicated their life to theout positive signals to encourage, inspire and motivate people. development and support of the organic movement. The LifetimeThe only continuity in life is change” Achievement Award winner is presented with a One World Award ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 13
  14. 14. TrustinQuality.World- Save time - combine our certification services . organic (EC, NOP, JAS, private labels) . fair trade social accountability . natural textiles . fisheries aquaculture . forestry, timber paperwide. . wild collection . cosmetics . good practices food safety . off-farm inputs verification . traceability analysis With innovations one step aheadWe build bridges between regional suppliers . Fair For Life - Fair Trade Social Responsibility . ConCert - IMO Import Safety Servicesand discerning consumers across . AquaGAP - Sustainable Aquaculturemany languages, cultures and expectations. . GOTS Positive List System . FairWild - Harvest trade of wild plantsA highly experienced international bodyfor quality assurance of sustainable 14 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMINGIMO Head Office Weststrasse 51 CH – 8570 Weinfelden Switzerland Phone: +41 (0) 71 626 0 626 Fax: +41 (0) 71 626 0 623
  15. 15. The OWA is meant as a counter balance to the day-to-day examples of injustice and and conflicts in our worldstatue. Nominations for either award should be submitted before positive social repercussions. These projects include Hand InDecember 31, 2011. The application form should be completed Hand, the Genfrei Gehen (GMO-free marches) and the One Worldin English. Award. For more information visit www.rapunzel.deDetails: The OWA Laureates 2010IFOAM has assumed patronage for the One World Award. The The second OWA was awarded in 2010. The award ceremonyOWA Jury includes Joseph Wilhelm, the two Right Livelihood took place during Rapunzel’s One World Festival in Legau. TheAward Laureates, Dr. Vandana Shiva from India and Tewolde OWA Laureates in 2010 were Hans Herren from Biovision andEgzeabher from Ethiopia, as well as IFOAM Vice-President Rachel Angola. Hans Herren founded the Biovision Foundation inRoberto Ugas from Peru. Switzerland in 1998. This foundation aims to improve the living conditions of African people. The foundation’s work includesMore information about the nomination process and the nomina- malaria prophylaxis, the formation of an information network fortion details and other information is available at small peasants and the dissemination of the “push-pull” Here you can find full details about nomination for combating corn pests. Rachel Angola is responsible for thecriteria and a list of all previous finalists and laureates. You can “push-pull” support group in her village Yenga in Kenya. Thisuse this list to evaluate the chances of your nomination being self-help group also promotes innovative, agricultural methods tosuccessful or simply for inspiration. Self-nominations are not other farmers.permitted. The One World Lifetime Achievement Award“ went to the orga- nic pioneer Bhaskar H. Save from India for his life’s work as anBackground information: ambassador of organic farming.For more than 35 years, the organic food manufacturer Rapunzel For more details visit gila.kriegisch@rapunzel.dehas been leading the way in implementing projects around the Nominations for the 2012 One World Award are open until December 31,globe that protect the climate and the environment and have 2011. Find out more at ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 15
  16. 16. The sleeping organic giant of Africa Nigeria mike Johnson The global sales of organic products reached $50 billion in 2009 with most sales and consumers in the United States and the European Union. The major organic producers and exporters are Asia, Latin America and Australasia. Very little organic produce comes from the African continent.W ith 212,304 hectares, Uganda age life expectancy of about 47 years. Local market development has the most organic land The Olusegun Obasanjo Center for The local organic market is informal and in Africa. The value of its Organic Research and Development growing, with visible opportunities in theexported organic products in 2008 was (OOCORD), a local NGO dedicated to near future. Most organic productionestimated to be around $30 million. The the development of research and know- and activities are done in the central andequivalent figures in Nigeria are negligible. ledge exchange on sustainable, organic south western parts of Nigeria, generallyIn 2009, there were only 8,202 hectares agricultural systems has decided that it by agricultural universities and researchof organic land in Nigeria (Olugbenga, is high time for Nigeria, a potential agri- institutes. The farm sizes of these insti-2011), despite Nigeria being four times cultural giant in Africa to wake up from tutions vary from 1 to 4 hectares of landlarger than Uganda in terms of area and her slumber and provide sufficient (orga- that is either in transition or non-certified.population. nic) food and incomes for its 155 million The farms are managed by the university inhabitants. This led OOCORD to consult lecturers and students. The products cul-Before the advent of the petroleum indus- the Agro Eco - Louis Bolk Institute in the tivated include amaranths, chorchorus,try in Nigeria in the 1960s, the agricultural Netherlands. celosia, turmeric, ginger, lemongrass,sector flourished. It contributed about citrus fruits, tomatoes, okra, maize, plan-60% of GDP, and provided sufficient and The two parties discussed how progress tain, fluted pumpkins and palm kernel.healthy food for local and export markets. could be made and came up with a stra- These products are sold on the universityThe wealth generated by agriculture was tegy, the first phase of which included campuses. Another influential player inused in the construction of massive buil- information provision, training and the the local market of organic agriculture indings, such as Cocoa House and Univer- development of local and international Nigeria is Dara / Eurobridge Ltd, the onlysity College Hospital in Ibadan, which are markets. The trainings would provide certified organic producer in Nigeria. Theirstill used today. But the agricultural sector producers and exporters with the relevant certified products are lemon grass, hibis-now contributes about 32% of GDP. A information on organic agriculture and also cus, rice and ginger. Lemon grass, whichproportionate decline of 50%, resulting in the criteria and expectations of importers is processed into tea sold under theinsufficient food in a nation with an aver- in the international market. brand name ‘Dara Dara’ ( meaning ‘good16 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  17. 17. Country reportgood’) is the core product. At present the and less turgid, and are known as products withcompany only targets the local market. “IBILE” (which means local or traditional the most export potentialDuring our visit to Nigeria, it was noticed in Yoruba language). Those from conven- that would fulfil the criteriathat there could be a demand for several tional cultivation are bulky and very turgid, and demands of the European Union andlocal, organically produced products, and are know as “AGRIC” which denotes North American markets. This list wasincluding local rice (ofada rice), ama- the use of conventional agricultural inputs drawn up using eight key criteria. One ofranths, chorchorus, celosia, turmeric, these was the ability to produce and sup-ginger, lemon grass, citrus fruits, tomato, The majority ply without jeopardising local food secu-okra, maize, plantain, and palm kernel. of Nigerian rity, as we did not want a situation whereThese products form part of the staple farmers are products are exported and the localdiet of Nigerians and existing (organic)producers are unable to meet the supply. smallholder population left hungry. The next step was the compilation of agricultural products farmers found from the 36 States and the FederalLocal consumers do appreciate organic who use Republics Capital, which produced a longproducts, saying that they taste bet- traditional list of products cultivated in Nigeria. Thister. Some even went further saying that “organic” list was scanned to eliminate products methodsorganic foods are are nutritious foods and unsuitable for export such as cassava,assist in the management of non-commu- indigenous goat, kola nuts, etc.nicable diseases such as diabetes, cancer (pesticides and fertilizers). This awarenessand hypertension. suggests a ready market in Nigeria if local What does the giant have to offer??? organic products were being cultivated Nigeria is blessed with a diverse climateConsumers could even distinguish pro- and available. and vegetation, that enables year-roundducts that are cultivated in an organic production of many different crops. Agri-manner from those cultivated in a conven- International market development culture in Nigeria is still a major branch oftional manner. Those that are cultivated For the international market, we were set the economy. The agricultural sector pro-organically are of a natural size, colour the assignment of selecting 10 organic vides employment for 70% of the popula- ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 17
  18. 18. Before theadvent of thepetroleumindustry inNigeria, theagriculturalsectorflourished tion. The majority of Nigerian farmers are with international organic standards. smallholders using traditional methods, Nigeria also has an image problem with such as crop rotations, shifting cultiva- religious violence in the northern and tion, animal manure and natural pest central parts and frequent kidnappings control. As such their farming methods in the southern part of the country. This of farming could be classified as organic could be an obstacle to convincing by default. However, organic production investors or importers in the EU and extends beyond cultivation. It is a pro- USA to do business with exporters of cess that goes through the entire supply organic products from Nigeria. Finally chain. Properly organized organic farming Nigeria will have to compete on the is still at the infant stages in Nigeria and export market with countries like India, although small, the organic sector is Uganda, Ghana and Tunisia, who are motivated and committed. experienced, organized certified coun- tries with established customers. The strings and pegs that would hinder Nigeria’s ‘organic awakening’ Reasons for the giant to wake up The majority of the farmers lack of There is an increase in global demand experience on active good agricultural for organic produce. Global sales of practices. Their systems may be organic organic products continues to expand. by default, but for export, producers are There is also an increasing local interest expected to produce according to inter- in organic produce. The universities national standards and keep records. could outsource to farmers who could For smallholder farmers it is difficult to then produce on a larger scale to meet achieve product uniformity, certification demand. Finally there is local awa- and to organize themselves for the export reness about the benefits of organic market. There is just one local certified foods and consumers believe organic organic producer and two certified produ- products are wholesome foods. cers and exporters in Nigeria. This does In all it is likely that Nigeria will become not give the country a competitive pre- increasingly involved in organic agri- sence in the international market. There culture as farmers have nothing to lose is also a lack of coordination between but stand to gain financially, increase organizations and institutions involved in food sufficiency and build a healthy and organic agriculture and a gap in the flows prosperous nation. The African giant is of information and technologies between waking up. them. There is no Nigerian certification body to regulate and ensure compliance Mike Johnson ( 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  19. 19. 6 Expert opinions on reducing trade barriers EF asked six experts if we can reduce Diane Bowen Peter Brul trade barriers through equivalence AND at the same time maintain organic integrity in the markets. In the US, the Deputy Secretary of Agriculture recently declared that the National Organic Program is in the “age of enforcement.” Fraud prevention dis- cussions and initiatives have emerged in Europe and North America, aimed at both domestic and international trade. Major import markets remain suspicious of exports from emerging countries and regions. Fraud scandals have the potential to shake con- sumer confidence, which could harm organic markets and credibility and set back orga- nic production/consumption. Yet, at the same time, regulations and the attendant bureaucracies are choking organic trade, creating an additional ‘tax’ on the best agricultural products by placing many requirements on organic food that are not placed on other agricultural products. The requirements for market access can be prohibitive, especially for producers from deve- loping countries. They are not good for consumers either, as they reduces the diversity of available products. The effect of these supply and demand restraint are to hold back the expansion of organic agriculture. An “age of equivalence” is needed to remove bar- riers to trade in organic products. Countries should find ways to cooperate and mutually recognise that organic standards and conformity assessment measures accomplish the same or very similar objectives, rather than seeking to impose their own criteria.20 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  20. 20. economy market Xingji Xiao, Director of the ment of the importing countries are responsible for Organic Food Development supervision of organic integrity; people should not just solely blame the producers if any fraud is found. and Certification Center of At the same time, exporting countries are looking to China (OFDC China). produce organic products at a lower cost by employ- ing standards and management systems that are Setting different standards or higher cer- more suitable to local situations. tification requirements is, perhaps, not the right way to eliminate fraud. As long Both developed and developing countries have a as there are significant gaps between organic and shared aim of reducing cheating and increasing trade. Xingji Xiao conventional products, ineffective supervision from Standards equivalence, including equivalence recog- certification bodies and governments and insufficient nition and supervision management, is a useful tool public awareness and involvement of the public with to promote international trade. Countries and CBs organic products, there is always the possibility for from different countries must cooperate more and people attempting deliberate fraud. exchange more information, so as to increase the transparency of certification, public awareness and All exported organic products are certified by control participation. In Asia we are establishing a mecha- bodies (CBs) that are accredited by the importing nism for cooperation among countries and CbBs and countries: most of the CBs are transnational compa- to improve exchanges among the supervisory autho- nies based in those countries. The CBs and govern- rities of all the countries involved in organic trade.Beate Huber, Head of the – and the organic standards in these coun-International Division of the tries should address these issues.Research Institute of Organic If exports to the EU only need to com-Agriculture (FiBL) and member ply with the EU regulation then this willof the “Anti-Fraud Initiative”. not happen. Standards are also written in a local context and should reflect the values and BeateThere is a perception that compliance provides expectations of local producers and consumers. Hubermore security for safeguarding organic integrity. Yet These different values make the situation very com-the opposite is true . Organic integrity needs local plicated. The mutual recognition of standards onownership and locally adapted solutions. Standards the basis of equivalence needs to be based on theare always written in a local context, for example: understanding of the need for common objectivesthe EU regulation on organic agriculture does not and agreement that there are different ways to reachtackle water quality or the issue of burning crop resi- these objectives. This requires a well-managed anddues since these are regulated through the general transparent process and dialogue among the sta-legal framework. In other countries the general legal keholders – whether at the local or the internationalframework does not adequately cover these issues level. ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 21
  21. 21. Dr David Crucefix Dr David Crucefix, Executive have been waiting Director (Business), Inter­ over 10 years on one waiting list) and can national Organic Accreditation be hijacked by vested Service. interests. Equivalence agreements can help to reduce the At the moment there are already around 100 sets of existing layers of bureaucracy. This is clear and is national regulations. Where is this leading? Is each already happening. Equivalence does not however country going to seek equivalence with each other? imply less rigour or new openings for fraud. There are a number of good equivalence approaches In fact equivalence has the potential to reduce con- and options but the regulators have failed to pick up fusion and enables an inspector to focus on one set and run with IFOAM’s Accreditation (despite its track of requirements rather than juggling 3 or 4 and not record and being highly respected) as one of those having the time to focus on key issues of integrity. equivalent approaches. This continues to be a great The problem of our equivalence approach is that it missed opportunity and the IOAS would be happy to is difficult in practice (the IOAS has had plenty of work with any regulators in adding this to their tool experience of this), can take forever (some countries box.Laura Montenegro, Technical since 2009. In 2011 Canadian products were decla-Director and President of red as equivalent to EU ones, but this does not makeARGENCERT S.A., certifier in US and EU products equivalent to each other. Austra-Argentina. lia accepts the imports of organic products produced under standards and conformity assessment systemsEven though over 70 countries have organic regula- with “equal reliability”. Chile is considering amendingtions, there are few agreements about harmonization its law to accept imports of processed products usingfor equivalence. transactional certificates from ‘regulated’ countries.Here are some examples of the current situation:Argentina has had equivalence with the EU for Overall, markets should ensure that equivalenceexports since 1992. But Argentina does not recog- based on adherence to principles and clear objecti-nize the standards of any other countries for imports, ves, rather than arguing about irrelevant details that Laurawhich is needed to make products available that are do not compromise the integrity of the end product. Montenegronot produced in our country. In January 2011 Brazil The conventional market players areimplemented a law which included a stipulation that the only ones gaining from the orga-certifiers of products labelled as “organic” in Brazil nic sector’s incoherence and narroware required to be accredited by the national accre- mindedness. Equivalence is the onlyditation body rather than any other member of the way to increase trade and facilitate theInternational Accreditation Federation (IAF). Canada growth of international trade in organichas had an agreement of equivalence with the USA products.22 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  22. 22. economy market Volkert Engelsman, Founder and We should implement fast lane import authorisation CEO of Eosta, a major importer procedures to avoid complex red tape practices that hinder global trade and constitute a significant trade and export of organic fruit and barrier. The lack of any ‘polluter pays’ standard for vegetables. conventional agriculture probably forms the most serious trade barrier for organic farming as it creates It is important to convince govern- an uneven playing field (with true cost ments to harmonise regulations accounting in organic farming and the on the basis of a minimum global externalisation of ecological costs in standard (using IFOAM’s Family of conventional farming). But this issue Standards as a key reference) and to is probably beyond our sphere of mutually recognise the equivalence influence. of locally justified adjustments. Volkert EngelsmanJohann Zueblin, Migros super- the mutual recognition of standards. Why not use themarkets in Switzerland. Deputy IFOAM standard as THE international reference for allHead of Issue Management and organic standards? Each standard could be assessed for its equivalence against the common understan-Sustainability. ding of the reference. This benchmarking could pro- vide a result that could be expressed as being higher,Organic producers take their reference from local equal to, or below the reference. The benchmarkedstandards, label programmes and very often natio- standard would then be free to communicate thenal legislation. Standards try to be different without result to costumers, official bodies and stakeholders.adding real value. They do so this to differentiate This system could be appliedthemselves and to increase their market share. This worldwide without any dis-behaviour leads to complex production and certifi- crimination. Such a processcation systems as well as supply chains. IFOAM as would increase transparencyan international body has defined a standard, which and trust. The key to successwe could call the “reference standard for organic would be the equivalence ofproduction”. the process. The Global Social Compliance Program hasI strongly recommend that the organic community already developed one (Seedevelops and starts to use a system that allows for Johann Zueblin ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 23
  23. 23. MARKET ACCESSJon ManhireAsian regional standardsRAPID PROGRESSIN DEVELOPING ANASIAN REGIONALORGANIC STANDARDThe Global Organic Market Access (GOMA) project is a joint projectinvolving FAO, IFOAM and UNCTAD that was established in 2009 topromote and foster equivalence and harmonization of organic standards andtechnical regulations. GOMA organized a Working Group for Co-operation onOrganic Labelling and Trade for Asia (South, South-East and East Asia) whichdecided to develop the Asia Regional Organic Standards (AROS). The large number and critical Strong linkages between local Organic Issues importance of small farms for sup- plying most of the region’s food food production and local, nation- al and regional cultures. in Asia requirements. Many of these small farms also keep livestock, The importance of rice produc- The key criterion for developing regional such as chickens and pigs. tion and consumption in most organic standards is to ensure that they countries in the region. are tailored to reflect local conditions and The long history of practicing issues. Though there is a great diver- agriculture in the region and the A tropical climate (over most of sity within the region in terms of climate, subsequent evolution of farming the region) and the evolution of crops produced, farming traditions and systems adapted to local condi- farming systems which are adapt- systems, there are also some common tions, resources and societal ed to tropical climatic conditions.v features. needs.24 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  24. 24. T standards certification he aim is to create a reference for have been based on the use of natural, equivalence of government organic biological, renewable and regenerative standards in the region as part of resources. Soil fertility is primarily main-a framework for cooperation on organic tained through recycling organic matter.labelling and trade in the region. It was Pests, diseases, and weeds are managedalso anticipated that AROS could also be primarily through cultural practices. Foodadapted to serve as the national standard processing is typically simple using biolo-for some individual countries in the region gical, mechanical, and physical methods.that do not yet have a standard. However Possibly as a result of this alignmentit is not the intention for AROS to replace between traditional and organic farmingany existing national organic standards. systems the understanding and subse- quent development of organic farming inTraditional approaches to farming in the the region has been comparatively strong.Asian region are strongly aligned with the Governments and non-governmentalvalues and objectives of organic farming. groups see that the increased adoptionLike organic production systems they of organic production will bring a range of The GOMA Working Group has established a sub-project to the requirements of the • Codex Alimentarius Organic The AROS develop AROS and establish the Guidelines and the IFOAM development principles that should guide its Basic standards version 2005 process development. the EquiTool – especially • The standard should be develo- Annex 2 – Common Objectives ped through a highly inclusive pro- and Related Requirements for cess, with in-country consultation Organic Standards – (COROS). facilitated by participating govern- ments and stakeholders. The development process will be overseen by the Asia Organic The standard development will Standards Drafting Group, a sub- take into consideration: group of the Working Group. an earlier technical compara- • tive study prepared by GOMA benefits to their countries in addition to enhancing trading opportunities. While the organic sector is a very dif- ferent level of development (from the early stages of development to the highly regulated) in different Asian countries, it is now an accepted concept and a grow­ ing market trend in the region. Exports remain a dominant feature of the sector’s development in the majority of countries, but local markets have emerged and are gaining ground. ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 25
  25. 25. The Drafting Group (DG) consists of repre- worked well together in the developmentsentatives of government, industry and process, sharing ideas and experiencesnon-government organizations from coun- to ensure that AROS effectively reflectstries throughout the region. It has so far regional conditions and practices. Theheld two workshops, the first in the Philip- first draft of AROS was prepared at thepines and the second in Laos, preceded March 2011 workshop held in the Philip-and followed up by extensive in-country pines. Following feedback a second draftconsultations facilitated by the DG mem- was developed at the Laos workshop inbers after each workshop. The DG mem- Vientiane in June 2011. Some key deci-bers have a wide range of knowledge and sions were made at this workshop by theexperience with organic production in the DG and only a few outstanding issues stillregion and in the development of organic need to be addressed. These decisionsstandards and regulations. They have covered a number of key issues.Conversion period:  it was decided that the mini- after discussing the issue again, the group changedmum conversion period for this region should be 12 the language to permit highly restricted use thatmonths for annual crops and 18 months for peren- excludes application on any leafy, tuber or rootnial ones.  Although conversion periods are typically crops, plus measures to control pathogens.longer in temperate climates, this standard is beingdeveloped for a region that is primarily tropical and Lists of inputs:  the indicative lists of inputs forsub-tropical, where chemicals break down faster. organic production were modified to include plant-It was agreed that these shorter conversion peri- derived substances that are used in the region.ods provide a sufficient time period for the organic These included permitting the use of tea-seed mealsystem to become established without financially and fishtail palm extracts as biological substancespenalizing the farmer. that can be used to protect crops.Seeds and planting materials:  there is some flexi- The comment period on the second draft endedbility in the standard that allows for the use of non- on the 1st of November and includes inputs from aorganic seed when organic or untreated seeds are consultation workshop held at the Organic Worldunavailable.  Although there is an aspiration to use Congress on 30th seed, such markets are not yet well develo- March - Philippine Drafting Group Workshopped in this region. Hydroponic production:  discussions revealed dif-ferences in certification practices and opinions overhydroponic production –even when it otherwisemeets the requirements of organic production.  Thedraft prohibition on this type of production was leftintact, subject to further discussion and inputs.Use of human excrement as a fertility amendment:  Jon Manhire works for thethe first draft prohibited the use of human excre- AgriBusiness Group, New Zealand and was involved inment on any crops for human consumption, but the development of AROS.26 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  26. 26. standards certification MARKET ACCESSEast Africa’s regional standardsBUILDINGAN ‘AFRICAN-OWNED’CERTIFICATIONSTANDARDkilimanjaro ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 27
  27. 27. Gunnar RundgrenOrganic agriculture has developed rapidly in East Africa and can nowclaim around half a million certified farmers. The sector is now pressingahead for the European Union to approve the Organic Standard ofthe East African Community. Two projects involving IFOAM, FAO,UNCTAD and the region’s national organic movements are providingmuch needed support for this process.E ast Africa is leading the deve- and Regional Cooperation for Organic lopment of organic agriculture Standards and Certification in East Afri- in Africa. In total, half a million can (OSEA - implemented by IFOAM andfarmers and some 150 companies are the national organic movements of Eastinvolved in certified organic production. Africa), are assisting stakeholders andThere are almost certainly even more the East African Community in gettingorganic farmers who are uncertified and the European Commission to recog-outside the organic market place. Organic nize EAOPS as an equivalent standard.exports have been growing rapidly in the This will facilitate the export of organiclast decade. For instance, Ugandan orga- products from East Africa into the EU.nic exports have risen from $4.6 million in The strategy has been for one or more2002 to $36 million in 2010, a growth of certification bodies to include EAOPS asmore than 700%. Domestic markets are has been widely adopted by producers part of their application for the Commis-also growing fast in most of the countries, in the region and it is now time to seek sion’s approval as equivalent certificationalbeit from a very low level, and there are recognition of the standard by trading bodies. The first applications were sub-an increasing number of organic outlets. partners further afield, particularly in the mitted in 2009 and the EU is expected European Union (EU). Following changes to approve the first group of certifica-A regional standard to the EU import rules in 2008 (Regulation tion bodies soon. Several certificationThe East African Organic Products (EC) 1235/2008), it is now easier to get bodies that are active in East Africa areStandard (EAOPS) was developed bet- such recognition, even though there is no involved in this first round of submissions.ween 2005 and 2007 by public and pri- specific option in the Regulation for the Approvals are based on proof that thevate stakeholders from Uganda, Tanzania, approval of a foreign standard. Standards certification bodies are competent andKenya, Burundi and Rwanda. It was are only recognized as part of the process use standards that are equivalent to theultimately approved by the East African of approving a country or certification EU standard. A certification body can beCommunity, the region’s intergovernmen- body. In East Africa, the approval of cer- approved for certifying several equivalenttal organization. It is adapted to the con- tification bodies is the most appropriate standards. It is thus possible for thoseditions of East Africa and is intended to avenue, as Diane Bowen from the GOMA approved in the first round to submit aprovide a platform for the development of project explains below. renewed application based on EAOPS.local and regional markets. Producers fol-lowing the standard can use the East Afri- In search of EU recognition Representatives of the two projects andcan Organic Mark, if they are certified by Two international projects, Global Organic the organic movements in East Africaa third-party certification body or a Parti- Market Access (GOMA - directed by a held a meeting with the European Com-cipatory Guarantee System. The standard partnership of FAO, IFOAM and UNCTAD) mission in Brussels in June. At the same28 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  28. 28. standards certificationtime a workshop on organic agriculture EAOPS for admission to the IFOAM Fami- Seeking internationalin Africa was organised involving repre- ly of Standards, which was verified at thesentatives from the European and the IFOAM General Assembly in Korea.African Unions. These events provided recognitiona further opportunity for GOMA’s repre- Diane Bowen says “The IOAS assessment for Eastsentatives and other advocates from East shows that, by and large, EAOPS is equi- Africa’sAfrica to explain the standard and callfor its recognition for imports into the valent to the EU regulation, but there are a few problem issues. None of these issues regionalEU. Moses Muwanga, from the National are at a level that would imply any imme- organicOrganic Agricultural Movement of Uganda diate change to the standard. Instead, the standardand an IFOAM Board member, outlined stakeholders plan to issue certificationthe standard. GOMA’s Project Manager, guidance to strengthen the implementation applicants. The OSEA project is also provi-Diane Bowen, made a presentation on the of the standard”. Once the guidance and ding financial support to local organic cer-role of international equivalence and how the response to the IOAS are ready, one or tification bodies in Tanzania and UgandaEOAPS complies with these requirements. more certification bodies will submit their to assist them to maintain their accredita-Sophia Twarog, from UNCTAD and a applications for approval to the EU, based tion status, a prerequisite for EU approval.member of GOMA’s Steering Committee, Training of local certification bodies hasappealed to the workshop participants to been conducted and will continue. Simplefind a way forward for EAOPS. guides and explanations of the standards have been developed to facilitate theInternationally recognised uptake of EAOPS in the region. “We seeGOMA has commissioned International these efforts as something that can lift theOrganic Accreditation Services Inc. (IOAS) organic sector to a new level” says Gamato assess the equivalence of EAOPS with Jordan, head of the Tanzania Organic Agri-the EU regulation. EAOPS has also been culture Movements. He continues: “theseassessed against COROS (Common practical efforts are important componentsObjectives and Requirements of Orga- in the implementation of the Nationalnic Standards, also known as IFOAM’s Organic Agriculture Action Plan, whichStandards Requirements). The COROS was approved last year.”assessment concluded that the EAOPS -Information about OSEA and the East Africanfulfils the requirements, with some minor on EAOPS. Three certification bodies Organic Products Standard is available at: On the basis of this assess- operating in East Africa have expressed -Information about the GOMA project can be foundment IFOAM evaluated the eligibility of interest in being among this first round of at: ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 29
  29. 29. Certification oforganic cateringa need forharmonizationacross Europe?30 5-2011 | ECOLOGY FARMING
  30. 30. standards certificationThe consumption of organic food is increasing and people often paysignificant premium prices for organic products. Between 1995 and 2007,another remarkable trend occurred: while the average European Unionhousehold expenditure on food consumption (adjusted for inflation) was15%, the spending on catering services increased by 25%. From 2008onwards total household expenditure and expenditure on catering servicesstayed more or less in line with general economic developments.Melanie Lukas, Carola Strassner Anne-Kristin LøesThe catering sector is attracting increa- any future harmonization process. It wassing attention at the pan-European level conceived as an explorative pilot study, toand one emerging question is that of the analyze and give an oversight of the cur-certification of organic establishments. rent situation.The European (EU) Council RegulationNo. 834/2007 on organic production and Prospects of harmonizationlabelling of organic products obliges the A further web based questionnaire ofEuropean Commission to report to the EU experts in the field was undertaken whichCouncil on the scope of the Regulation received a response rate of 25%, withbefore the end of 2011, and to make clear replies coming from experts from fourteenreference to ‘organic food prepared by EU member states and one non-membermass caterers’. The council Regulation, country. These countries have developedwhich came into effect on January 1st very different approaches to certifying2009, governs these topics in all member food in serving outlets. The procedures mass organic catering. When asked aboutstates. However, member states are still for the certification of organic food served the satisfaction level with the present situ-allowed to adopt national rules or private in out-of-home settings were reviewed ation in Europe for organic mass cateringstandards for the out-of-home market, and analyzed in the first four of these certification, the majority of respondentssince the regulation does not cover such countries. Germany was included as a was ‘unsatisfied’ or ‘a little bit unsatisfied’operations. reference country since it has legally regu- (Figure 1). lated this area. The study provides first Furthermore, respondents would veryThe study into ‘innovative Public Orga- insights into how certification procedures much welcome a harmonized certificationnic food Procurement for Youth’ (iPOPY, for the organic out-of-home market might scheme for the organic mass catering2007-2010) was one of eight research be harmonized and adapted to general sector (Figure 2). A large majority con-projects conducted as part of the CORE European conditions. Another aim was to sidered that the EU-wide harmonizationOrganic I programme. This investigated find out if certification body officials and of organic certification in mass cateringthe strategies and instruments used within other professionals working in this field would have mainly positive impacts. Onlya number of European countries (Italy, are satisfied with the current situation, and five respondents feared negative impacts.Denmark, Finland, Norway and Germany), their experientially-based viewpoints about When asked to consider the most impor-to increase the consumption of organic the issues that should be considered in tant drivers of such a harmonization ECOLOGY FARMING | 5-2011 31