BIO SOLUTIONS TO THE RESCUE: THE STORY OF NORLIE’S GREEN

The embrace of chemical free Food production has made consumers appreciate good health through bio solutions. One of the companies that now champion green agriculture is Norlie s green.  Norlie’s Green is an Agribusiness entity that deals in total Agriculture,value chains and food processing.

Norlie’s Green is registered by law thew Corporate Affairs Commission to underwrite the  above listings of Business.

Norlie’s Green is a vehicle to innovation for most farms and in other agri business space.

Norlie’s Green is in partnership( distribution cadre) for an Indian technology Company,a company that devices several machinery and tools to better enhance the farmers activities and profitability.

Norlie’s Green has recorded success in the last 2 years of registration in terms of vegetable cultivation,cucumber and water melon,we are currently expanding of horizons in to cultivation of capsicum in a green House facility and hopes to continue in the diverse.

Norlie’s Green is notable as well for commodity trades and exchange with arrays of partners is the endeavour.

Being a futuristic entity, Norlie’s Green is the producer and manufacturer of Dr Sachs Sugarcane juice also using the bi- products of sugarcane to produce activated charcoals and bio-char, we hope to produce bio-fuels and molasses t from bi- products in no distant future.

For further information , please contact Safe Food and Feed Foundation, who are marketing them

Contact 234 8033709492

FOOD SAFETY AND ODOR CONTROL

 

Food odor is rampant anywhere food is being prepared or served. The odor may be a reflection of  a few  condiments added to it or a combined effect of all the ingredients, on being heated. At times, such aroma may put off prospective consumers thus attracting loss of interest.. Happily, some manufacturers have devised interventions that can nullify the odor impact by chemical or biological means. Effectiveness of each product is however, determined by the end user .

Although big hotels, poultry and markets  reco0gnise the need to deodorize the air environment, many individual faced with economic challenge, are still left out of the loop. The result is a continuous occupation of public spaces   by undesirable odors sometimes form food sources, at other times from decaying organic  and non- food sources.

Anything that compromises the hygienic quality of air may jeopardize human and animal health. The  is pocket-friendly, effective bio solution that leaves no trace after the period of odor capture.

For promotional feature articles, corporate interviews on products and services in Food and Feed safety, please contact   please contact  <sfoodfeedf@gmail.com>

GM COWPEA APPROVED IN NIGERIA

About a month ago , Nigeria took a bold step into the controversial terrain of Genetically Modified Foods   by giving approval for the commercialization of a new Pod Borer Resistant (PBR) Cowpea

With this, Nigeria hopes to score tremendous success capable of being emulated soon by Ghana, Malawi and Burkina Faso. Antagonists of the move are however not relenting. Please read the Press Release by the experts on the new crop

Press Release

Nigeria Commercializes First Transgenic Food Crop

[Abuja] December 15, 2019: The Federal Government of Nigeria has approved registration and release of a new Pod Borer Resistant (PBR) Cowpea variety for commercialization.

The approval was granted by the National Committee on Naming, Registration and Release of Crop Varieties, chaired by Mr. OladosuAwoyemi, at its 28th meeting which held in Ibadan on December 12, 2019.

The new cowpea variety, SAMPEA 20-T, was developed by scientists at the Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in collaboration with several partners under coordination of the African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF).

PBR Cowpea event AAT709A was earlier in the year granted environmental release approval by the National Biosafety Management Agency (NBMA), which confirmed the product was safe for human, livestock, and the environment. This approval paved the way for submission to the National Variety Release Committee for consideration and registration of the first variety containing the PBR Cowpea trait as a commercial crop in Nigeria.

The newly registered SAMPEA 20-T is highly resistant to Marucavitrata, an insect pest that causes up to 90 percent yield loss in severe infestation cases. 2

 

This new variety is early maturing (70 – 75 days) with semi-erect growth habit, insensitive to day-length, and has medium large white seeds. It is also resistant to Striga and Alectra, two notorious parasitic weeds.

The decision to release the variety means that farmers will have access to the seed that will help them significantly reduce the number of sprays they currently apply to their crop from 6 to 7 times to only 2 per cropping season and as a result realise better yield in quantity and quality. It will also contribute to addressing the national cowpea demand deficit of about 500,000 tonnes and also improve the national productivity average of 350kg/hectare.

During the Multilocational Advanced Yield Trials conducted across Nigeria’s agro-ecologies, researchers found SAMPEA 20-T to have high stable grain yield across the test locations. The minimum observed average grain yield increase over the conventional cowpea varieties was at least 20 percent, and this could be higher depending on severity of the Maruca infestation.

Prof. Mohammed Ishiyaku, the Principal Investigator for the project and Executive Director, Institute for Agricultural Research, Zaria said both the on-station and on-farm trials demonstrated the superiority of SAMPEA 20-T relative to local, recently released cowpea varieties and improved breeding lines tested. ‘SAMPEA 20-T is high yielding, early maturing and resistant to Striga and Alectra, which are major constraint to cowpea production in most producing areas in Nigeria and other dry savanna regions,’ said Prof Ishiyaku.

‘The protein and nutrients content of variety SAMPEA 20-T is the same as that of other conventional varieties meaning that the Bt gene that was introduced into the variety has no negative influence on the nutritional composition of both grain and folder,’ added Prof.Ishiyaku, saying that the newly released variety does not differ in any way from already existing cowpeas (beans) other than the improvements made.

Dr Denis Kyetere, Executive Director AATF, thanked the Federal Government of Nigeria for releasing the new cowpea variety saying it showed its commitment towards improving the livelihoods of smallholder farmer. ‘Cowpea farmers have had to endure difficult farming conditions that required them to spray their crop 6- 8 times just to make a profit which could be a risk to their lives,” Said Dr Kyetere. 3

 

“We at AATF express our joy with Nigeria as it takes the lead in the deployment of necessary technologies that show promise of solving the challenges which farmers encounter on a daily basis,’ added Dr.Kyetere

Dr IssoufouKolloAbdourhamane, the AATF PBR Cowpea Manager attributed the successful registration and naming of SAMPEA 20-T to the hard work and synergy between the various project partners including researchers at the IAR “Our joint effort of over 10 years addressing one of the vital challenges faced by cowpea farmers in Africa has paid off. Cowpea farming will now become attractive even to the younger generation as it has become less cumbersome with the effective management of Maruca,’ he said.

Prof.GarbaSharubuta, the Executive Secretary, Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria (ARCN), the apex organization supervising all agriculture research in the country welcomed the release of the new variety saying that cowpea is a major staple and vegetarian source of dietary protein in Africa. “Its production has been stalled by severe attack of insect pests in both the field and storage. One of such notorious pests is the legume pod-borer, (Marucavitrata). This pest has singularly contributed to significant cowpea yield reductions on our farmers’ farms.’

Prof.Sharubuta said that ARCN’s resolve is to make improved technologies available and accessible to farmers to enhance their yields and income and result in improved livelihoods. ‘One such economically viable, and environmentally sound solution to the problem of the legume pod borer is development of cowpea varieties that have inherent resistance to the lepidopteran pod borers,” Prof.Sharubuta added.

The Acting Director General and Chief Executive Officer of the National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA), said the release marked a great and memorable day for Nigeria, Africa and the World at large. ‘We all are marching towards food sufficiency and food security for Nigeria and all of mankind. Bt Cowpea is certainly a major and strategic addition.”

SAMPEA 20-T is a product of over a decade of research efforts by a partnership that brought together Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, for genetic transformation, IAR, NABDA, ARCN, Danforth Plant Science Center, which provided regulatory support, and Bayer CropScience, which provided the Cry1Ab gene to the partnership on humanitarian basis, royalty free, so that small scale farmers can access it affordably. The project partnership was coordinated by AATF with sustained funding by USAID.

The Project also received support from other stakeholders in Nigeria including the National Association of Cowpea Growers, the National Association of Nigerian Farmers and local seed companies.

 

For further information Please Contact:

Professor Mohammad F. Ishiyaku,

Institute for Agricultural Research, Ahmadu Bello University, Samaru, Zaria

E-mail : mffaguji@hotmail.com, Phone : +2348051316887

Dr IssoufouKolloAbdourhamane

Cowpea Manager,

AATF,

+2348128229436

i.abdourhamane@aatf-africa.org

 

Source=Personal Communication  Dr Saba Mohammed  (ABU)

 

 

CONFERENCE ON ORGANIC FARMING AND SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE

A gathering of experts and stakeholders in organic farming will take place in Luxembourg July 18-19, 2019

For more please visit

https://www.omicsonline.org/conferences-list/post-harvest-technology-and-processing

2/2019

EU risks being left behind after GMO ruling–Opinion

A recent ruling in a respected Eu court has said that gene-edited crops fall under the same tough laws as GMOs. While good news for opponents of such products, it’s a setback for genetic research on the continent, says DW’s Fabian Schmidt.

Research and promotion of GM crops and organisms has been engulfed in controversies among scientists and agro stakeholders .

For more , please visit the source

 

 

Source=https://www.dw.com/en/opinion-eu-risks-being-left-behind-after-gmo-ruling/a-44825520

 

 

Df   9/2018

ROUNDUP or any OTHER WEEDKILLER…SAFE or UNSAFE ?

Can Roundup, a popular weed killer incite cancer ? Is it possible in spite claims to the contrary ?

A man claimed he’s dying of cancer. Now, he’s the first patient to go to trial to argue Roundup made him sick
Monsanto says Roundup is safe and can't be linked to individual cancer cases.
(CNN) — On bad days, Dewayne Johnson is too crippled to speak. Lesions often cover as much as 80% of his body.
Doctors have said they didn’t expect him to live to see this day. But Monday marks a milestone: Johnson, 46, is the first of hundreds of cancer patients to see his case against agrochemical giant Monsanto go to trial.
Johnson, a former school groundskeeper, regularly used Roundup and claims it gave him cancer. Johnson, a former school groundskeeper, regularly used Roundup and claims it gave him cancer.
CNN reported last year that more than 800 patients were suing Monsanto, claiming its popular weed killer, Roundup, gave them cancer.
Since then, hundreds more non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma patients have made similar claims, Johnson’s attorney, Timothy Litzenburg, said. He now represents “more than 2,000 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma sufferers who used Roundup extensively,” he said.
Johnson, a father of two in California’s Bay Area, applied Roundup weed killer 20 to 30 times per year while working as a pest manager for a county school system, his attorney said.
Johnson’s case is the first to go to trial because, his doctors claim in court filings, he is nearing death. And in California, dying plaintiffs can be granted expedited trials.
And there’s a lot riding on this case, which could set a legal precedent for thousands of cases to follow.
Report on Roundup ingredient in dispute
The big questions at stake are whether Roundup can cause cancer and, if so, whether Monsanto failed to warn consumers about the product’s cancer risk.
In March 2015, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) said the key ingredient in Roundup, glyphosate, is “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
“For the herbicide glyphosate, there was limited evidence of carcinogenicity in humans for non-Hodgkin lymphoma,” the report states.
“The evidence in humans is from studies of exposures, mostly agricultural, in the USA, Canada, and Sweden published since 2001. In addition, there is convincing evidence that glyphosate also can cause cancer in laboratory animals.”
But Monsanto long has maintained that Roundup does not cause cancer, and that the IARC report is greatly outnumbered by studies saying glyphosate is safe.
“More than 800 scientific studies, the U.S. EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), the National Institutes of Health and regulators around the world have concluded that glyphosate is safe for use and does not cause cancer,” Scott Partridge, Monsanto’s vice president of strategy, said in a statement.
“We have empathy for anyone suffering from cancer, but the scientific evidence clearly shows that glyphosate was not the cause. We look forward to presenting this evidence to the court.”
Monsanto spokeswoman Charla Lord said regulatory authorities help ensure Roundup is safe.
“The safety of each labeled use of a pesticide formulation must be evaluated and approved by regulatory authorities before it is authorized for sale,” she has said.
The National Pesticide Information Center — a cooperative between Oregon State University and the EPA — said studies on cancer rates in humans “have provided conflicting results on whether the use of glyphosate containing products is associated with cancer.”
Many more cases to follow
Johnson’s case — and hundreds of similar cases against Monsanto — have been filed in various state courts, Litzenburg said. Many other cases have been filed in federal multidistrict litigation, or MDL.
Johnson had lesions on most of his body, a doctor said. Johnson had lesions on most of his body, a doctor said.
MDL is a procedure similar to class-action, in that it consolidates pre-trial proceedings for the sake of efficiency. But unlike a class-action lawsuit, each case within an MDL gets its own trial — with its own outcome.
In other words, one MDL plaintiff might get a large settlement, while another plaintiff might get nothing.
It’s not clear when future state or MDL trials will begin. One advantage of filing in state court — as Johnson did — instead of through MDL is that state courts might produce an outcome faster.
And in Johnson’s case, time is critical.
“Mr. Johnson is angry and is the most safety-oriented person I know,” his attorney said. “Right now, he is the bravest dude in America. Whatever happens with the trial and his health, his sons get to know that.”
CNN’s Theresa Waldrop contributed to this report.
View on CNN

Source=
https://amp.cnn.com/cnn/2018/06/17/us/monsanto-roundup-dewayne-johnson-trial/index.html

DF

EU: battle over pesticide safety escalates

The European Commission has announced it is prolonging the licence of glyphosate by five years. But in reaction to the massive protests the Commission also promised to present a legislative proposal in 2018 covering transparency of studies used in the assessment of pesticides and the governance of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

“We are glad to see that the European Commission has finally realised it needs to review its approach to transparency. As ever though, the details will be crucial “, comments Greens/EFA food safety spokesperson Bart Staes. In the access to documents case the Greens/ EFA took against EFSA. It is now for the European Court of Justice to take a decision on where to draw the line between the right of access to information, particularly environmental information, and the protection of the commercial interests of private companies. It is a shame that the Commission has only signalled its vague intentions to progress on this issue once the pressure got so high that they essentially had no other option, says Bart Staes.

“We need to make sure that EFSA is equipped to deliver transparent and thorough assessments. That’s one of the reasons that the Greens/EFA group is calling for a special committee in the European Parliament to investigate the failings revealed by the glyphosate process. I call on those groups not already fully behind the establishment of the committee to give it their support so that the parliament can have a strong voice on the future of EFSA and transparency in the EU.”

Greens/EFA president Philippe Lamberts adds: “If the European Commission won’t take the demands of over one million EU citizens seriously, then we will have to continue the fight using other means. We have strong arguments for referring the Commission’s decision to the European Court of Justice. The Commission has chosen to ignore the views of citizens, of the parliament, and of respected scientists, and has refused to pause to allow further investigation. We will work to build the necessary majority of MEPs to challenge this reckless decision.”

Background: Only 5 years and greater transparency

On 24 February 2016, the European Commission proposed a 15 year renewal of the licence for glyphosate. Almost two years later, the EU licence for glyphosate has been renewed for 5 years, not 15. The public awareness has risen massively, thanks to a huge mobilisation by determined civil society.

The Commission has today announced it will present proposals for greater transparency of the documents used for assessments on pesticides. However, within the current legal frameworks on access to environmental information and on access to EU documents, much more transparency should have already been granted. Earlier this year, 4 Green MEPs already filed a case at the ECJ demanding public access to the studies used by EFSA in the assessment of glyphosate. Monsanto, Cheminova and the German government joined EFSA in the Court to defend the commercial confidentiality of those studies. According to press reports, the German government may have withdrawn its participation in the case, but today the registry of the European Court of Justice had not yet received any notice of this.

Last week, the Greens/EFA group announced that it will attempt to get a majority in the EP to go to the ECJ to annul the Commission decision. MEPs are also calling for the establishment of a special committee to investigate the handling of the assessment process for pesticides.

Source=http://organic-market.info/news-in-brief-and-reports-article/eu-battle-over-pesticide-safety-escalates.html

19 12 2017

ORGANICS SUFFER DEFEAT AS EU RENEWS GLYPHOSATE FOR ANOTHER 5 YEARS

The world’s top-selling herbicide, glyphosate, can stay on the market in the European Union for another five years after an unexpected vote in favor of the renewal by German agriculture minister Christian Schmidt. Germany abstained from voting in all previous deliberations on glyphosate over the past few months. Schmidt took the decision into his own hands on Nov. 27, voting in favor of the five-year renewal, despite a lack of agreement within the German government. His decision was enough to swing the EU vote after months of talks ended in stalemate.

The final vote by the European Commission’s Appeal Committee was 18 in favor, nine against, and one abstention.

Farm groups and the pesticide industry are welcoming an end to the debate over glyphosate’s renewal in the EU, but they were hoping for a 15-year reauthorization. “We are pleased the substance has been reapproved, however not pleased that despite overwhelming scientific evidence it is only for a period of five years,” says Graeme Taylor, spokesperson for the pesticide industry group European Crop Protection Association. “This debate clearly sets many precedents for the future, and one of the most worrying is the way the movement against the substance has been driven by organizations relying on fear rather than science.”

The French government remains opposed to the five-year renewal for glyphosate. French President Emmanuel Macron expressed his disappointment with the vote, pledging on Twitter that France will ban the use of glyphosate “as soon as alternatives are found, and at the latest in three years.” He added, “#MakeOurPlanetGreatAgain.”

Concerns about the safety of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide and many generic formulations, have been escalating since the World Health Organization’s cancer agency deemed the chemical a probable carcinogen in 2015. Regulators around the world, including the European Chemicals Agency and the European Food Safety Authority, dispute that classification, saying there is no evidence to link glyphosate to cancer or reproductive effects.

Source=https://cen.acs.org/articles/95/i48/Glyphosate-renewed-five-years-EU.html

29 Nov 2019

ANY GMO CRISIS IN SWAZILAND ?

The GMO crisis in Swaziland…

The GMO crisis in Swaziland

By Tsakasile Dlamini
Participatory Ecological Land Use Management (Pelum) Swaziland Country Coordinator
October 2017
Swaziland is under enormous pressure to introduce genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the country’s farming system. This pressure is coming not only from Monsanto but also from farmers and some sections of the public who have been fed a great deal of misinformation and hype by the pro-biotech machinery. The farmers, acting on incomplete and often unsubstantiated information, are pushing for the adoption of genetically modified (GM) cotton, in the hope that it will give them greater yields, while reducing the costs of production.

Currently, according to Swaziland’s legislation, to import GM products or live GMOs (seeds) one needs to apply for a permit; a lengthy process that requires evidence that the GMO in question is safe. However, it is an open secret that farmers are bringing GM cotton and maize seed into the country illegally from South Africa because they have been informed that GM-based farming is more cost effective. It is unfortunate that a majority of our cotton farmers are told disingenuously about the “great yields and benefits” of GM cotton and not about the dangers associated with this technology. There is a serious lack of accurate information that would enable them to make informed decisions.
The biggest problem with introducing Bt cotton into Swaziland is that it only controls one pest – the bollworm – and doesn’t solve the other problems cotton farmers face in this country. For example, there is a serious shortage of water in the Lubombo region, where a majority of cotton farming takes place. Even with Bt cotton, farmers will still face water shortages, low cotton prices, secondary pests and – worse yet – resistant bollworms that will now require even more expensive and toxic sprays. In fact, Bt cotton will prove to be a more expensive and unsustainable option for cotton growing farmers.

PELUM has published articles in an effort to educate the public about the dangers of GMOs.

The Swaziland Cotton Board has made no effort to explore effective organic pest control measures, which could be sustainable economically and ecologically in the long term. Organic cotton also fetches a premium price at the market, a factor that is not being adequately shared with cotton farmers in Swaziland.
Furthermore, the Swaziland Environment Authority (SEA) has allowed the Swaziland Cotton Board to conduct confined field trials at several sites in the country, where they are growing BT cotton to test whether it is suitable for release into the environment. PELUM was once invited to view these “amazing” Bt cotton fields, and what we saw was a crop heavily infested with mealy bugs. So, the bollworm may have been temporarily controlled but what came next was a wave of secondary pests that threatened the performance of the GM cotton. The farmers were not told that in almost every country that has adopted Bt cotton, secondary pests have become a major problem.
In fact, incomplete data in a report on the confined field trials has been used as the basis for an application for permission to commercially grow Bt cotton in the country, which the Swaziland Cotton Board submitted to the SEA. The report doesn’t include any information about secondary pests (such as jassid infestation) that became a problem in some of the fields). It also carries no data on the effects of Bt cotton on soil quality. Were any changes brought about? The trials seem to have focused only on yield potential and adaptability of the two Indian varieties (JKAL 1947 and JKCH 1050).

PELUM Swaziland and its partners have made quite a lot of noise about this application, publishing articles in the media, submitting objection letters to the SEA and coming together to march to the SEA offices and deliver petitions to the SEA signed by farmers against the introduction of GM cotton in the country. Thirty people joined the march and delivered a petition with over 80 signatures on 15 September 2017, followed by another petition signed by 101 farmers, which was delivered on 30 September 2017.
What is worse is that industry and the Swaziland Cotton Board have lobbied legislators to support amendments to our Biosafety Act, in order to weaken the law. The legislators were taken on a “LEARNING” visit to South Africa (11 May 2016) and India (13–19 November 2016) where they were shown the “success” of Bt cotton and just how much Swaziland would also benefit if the crops were commercially released in the country. They were then informed that the Biosafety Act of 2012 is too strict and not conducive for the GMO companies to conduct business with farmers in Swaziland. An amendment of the strict liability and redress clause was proposed as the only way to ensure that farmers would have access to GM seeds. However, farmers did not realise that the amendment would also make it easier for GM companies to conduct business in the country, while stripping them of any protection from damage and loss as a result of this technology, as has already occurred in Burkina Faso.

To the best of my knowledge, the proposed amendments to the Biosafety Act of 2012 have not yet been adopted, as Parliament has not conducted a public consultation or validation workshop. As part of civil society, PELUM and its partners, Africa Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) and Third World Network (TWN), are eagerly awaiting such a workshop, where we will submit our objections to the proposed amendments.

PELUM organised a workshop for civil society on GMOs and biosafety issues, in partnership with Africa Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) and Third World Network (TWN).

The applications by the Swaziland Cotton Board and Nisela Farm for commercial release of Bt cotton, currently under review by the National Biosafety Advisory Committee, propose to roll out the GM cottonseed to all interested cotton farmers across the country, without even a proper assessment or database of the location of these farmers’ fields. This goes against the “precautionary approach” of the Biosafety Act and the Cartagena Protocol to which Swaziland is a Party.

There is an urgent need to create awareness on the dangers of this technology, as well as the possible alternatives that farmers should rather be exploring; in particular, agroecology.

PELUM Swaziland and its partners marched to the SEA offices to deliver objection letters and petitions signed by farmers, urging SEA not to grant the Swaziland Cotton Board permission to grow Bt cotton

Source=https://acbio.org.za/gmo-crisis-swaziland/
22 Oct 2017

NEW EU ORGANIC REGULATIONS ATTRACT EXPERT SCRUTINY

The new Organic Regulation – status quo and outlook

 by Karin Heinze

Part of panel discussing pro and contra of the new EU Organic Regulation.

Part of panel discussing pro and contra of the new EU Organic Regulation. From the left side: Toomas Kevvai, Deputy Secretary-General for Food Security and Development of the Rural Ministry of Estonia, Elena Panichi, Deputy Head of the Organic Unit DG AGRI, European Commission and Professor Nic Lampkin, Organic Research Centre, UK.© Karin Heinze

At the IFOAM EU Organic Congress in Tallinn representatives of the EU and of the organic sector discussed pro and contra of the new European Organic Regulation. After a record time of more than three years and 18 trilogues Regulatino probably will be launched in June 2020, although neither the Council and Commission nor the Parliament and the stakeholders of the organic sector are completely satisfied with the compromise.

At the panel discussion moderated by Markus Arbenz Managing Director of IFOAM Organics International, Elena Panichi, Deputy Head of the Organic Unit DG AGRI, European Commission, looked back to the very long negotiations about the proposal of the Commission. She explained that the negotiated compromise that was found under the EU-presidency of Malta in June will be the base of the further working out of the Regulation.

She expects the final meetings of the Commission and the Council for the Regulation in October/ November and after that the vote of the Parliament. Ms. Panichi was confident that the Regulation will be a harmonization of the organic law for all EU members. Toomas Kevvai, Deputy Secretary-General for Food Security and Development of the Rural Ministry of Estonia, which has the EU Presidency till the end of the year, said “certainly it is a compromise but that from the view of the member states it is acceptable.

Markus Arbenz, IFOAM Organics International, moderated the panel.

Markus Arbenz, IFOAM Organics International, moderated the panel. From the left side: Prof. Nic Lampkin, Markus Arbenz, Martin Häusling (MEP), translator, Thomas Fertl (IFOAM EU Board) © Karin Heinze

Martin Häusling, Member of the European Parliament and chief negotiator for the Organic Regulation emphasised: “Nobody is really and completely satisfied with the compromise paper. But after three years of negotiations I can say that we reached a draft that has an added value for the organic sector.” He added: There are 600 pages of the text and you must not only look at some problematic issues, because there is a true potential to make a the Regulation a senseful tool for the sector. As Professor Nic Lampkin from the Organic Research Centre in UK said, organic is much more than commodities free from pesticides. He explained that he can understand the unsecurity about this new regulation but he also reassures that there will be ways to handle the new regulation.

Associations call for further improvements

Thomas Fertl Board Member of IFOAM EU and BioAustria explained that he, IFOAM and other organic associations could not see the added value for the organic sector. He said: “It is no secret that the organic sector was not asking for a new regulation and that associations are sure that the work on the current regulation would have been more fruitful than a new draft.” Among others he quoted the regulations for residues in the draft and the import issues.
Professor Nic Lampkin outlined that there is the need of a regulation, but it should be a baseline and not a prison for organic producers. If rules are too restrictive and block the producers in their activities and innovation the regulation is on a wrong way. „In fact the Regulation should encourage organic farmers“, he said.

The participants from all over Europe listened the interesting discussions.

The participants from all over Europe listened the interesting discussions. © Karin Heinze

Private activities are welcome

Elena Panichi explained that every party in the process has its own role. She reminded the panel and the auditorium also that there are many other tools in the EU and that private activities are very welcome. An example is the European Innovation Partnership that brings new ideas also to the organic sector. Ms. Panichi also mentioned new tool that should strengthen farmers and there private along the food chain were more than welcome. On a global level there is a new initiative called ´plurilateral meets` that is involving the biggest players in the organic sector like the US, Canada, Europe, Switzerland, Chile, Japan and South Korea. In these talks the harmonisation of the international rules is discussed. This should make international trade easier and lower the burden for farmers and traders, Panichi said. Martin Häusling reqired fair rules for international competition.

Source=http://organic-market.info/news-in-brief-and-reports-article/the-new-organic-regulation-status-quo-and-outlook.html