INTERNATIONAL demand for premium organic produce is on the rise, and the Australian Government is reviewing regulations on the export of organics to ensure Australian producers can take full advantage of these opportunities.

Head of Exports Division at the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, Fran Freeman, encouraged interested parties to have their say on the regulation of trade in organic products before February 23, 2018.

“We’ve seen unprecedented international demand for premium organic produce in recent years, driven in part by a rapidly growing Asian middle class,” Ms Freeman said.

“Australia’s clean and green reputation puts primary producers in a strong position to help meet the world’s appetite for high-quality organic products.

“The department has appointed Deloitte to prepare an independent review of the export orders for organic products, aimed at improving access for Australian organic products into premium markets and increasing the competiveness of the sector.

“I encourage producers, certifiers, processors, peak bodies and anyone else with an interest in the organics sector to log in and have their say.

“The industry is also working towards a new national representative body to have one voice for the organic industries at national and state level, with broad representation from all sectors. The industry group leading the process has released a roadmap to a national unified voice by June 2018.

“A Love Organic event will be held in Canberra on February 14-15, 2018 to celebrate the progress made and plan for the steps ahead. This all comes under the Organics Action Plan, involving the Australian Government and industry, aimed at building a stronger Australian organics sector and generating greater opportunities for farmers to share their premium produce with the world.”

Under the Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper’s Agricultural Trade and Market Access Cooperation grant program (ATMAC) the Australian Government has: offered the organics industry up to $100,000 on a matching basis to support its development of an organics export strategy; awarded $70,000 to support market access gains through the use of the Organic Mark.

Submissions are open from December 22, 2017 and close on February 23, 2018. To have your say on the organic export orders review, register under the ‘Stay Informed’ box

For more information on improvements to trade in organics, visit: organic biodynamic assesssing premium markets.