Organic products bill passed into law

Added 5 months ago

Organic chicken farmer George Bostock has welcomed the new Organic Products and Production bill (passed into law last month) saying that it brings certainty to consumers in New Zealand and international markets.

“Both of our companies (Bostock Brothers and Bostock New Zealand) are strongly in favour (of the new bill).”

The new organics standard requires all businesses that market their products as organic to meet certain standards, and introduces hefty fines for those who deliberately deceive consumers by falsely claiming organic credentials. 

Bostock, managing director and co-owner of Bostock Brothers Organic Chicken says that having a regulated standard for organics will really help.

“It definitely will be easier to market New Zealand organic produce. We have to prove (organic) equivalency in other organic markets; having that regulated standard will help the New Zealand trade no end,” he says.

In a media statement Tiffany Tompkins, CEO of Organics Aotearoa New Zealand (OANZ),  says the law has been many years in the making.

“We’re delighted to see organics recognised in law. The Organic Products and Production Act brings New Zealand a step closer to a robust and internationally recognised organic standard.

“The new law is driven by growing demand for organic products both here and overseas. Consumers want safe, healthy food with high animal welfare standards, that regenerates the land and waterways, and mitigates climate change. Organics ticks all those boxes.”

OANZ will continue to work with the Ministry for Primary Industries on the regulations that will underpin the Act, including a national organic standard.

“Having a national organic standard that’s recognised by government will help market access for exporters to existing and new overseas markets. It will also provide certainty for consumers in this country that what’s being labelled and sold as organic, meets this standard,” said Tompkins.

Bostock expects the company’s domestic and export volumes will grow. Bostock Brothers currently produces around one million chickens each year (0.7% of the NZ poultry industry), exporting around 15% of production to eight offshore markets. The new bill paves the way for Bostock Chicken to enter additional export markets.

“The organic market is growing internationally, it’s fitting that the bill comes into play at this time.”

New Zealand has been slow to introduce organic standards, being one of the last countries in the OECD to do so.

Bostock says that New Zealand has been behind other markets. Of the new bill he says; “it’s good to get this up there.”

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