Horticulture

Body joins NFF

By Country News

Not-for-profit dairy industry body Australian Organic Limited has officially joined the National Farmers’ Federation, saying organic producers need a strong voice in Canberra.

Australian Organic general manager Niki Ford said the NFF membership would ensure the sector’s interests were drawn to the attention of federal politicians and their needs considered in government decisions.

The 2018 Market Report compiled by Australian Organic reveals there are an estimated 1998 certified organic primary producers in Australia including farmers, graziers, apiarists and wild harvesters.

Vegetable production dominates in the fruit, vegetable and nut sector with three-quarters of the sector value, beef dominates in the meat sector with 87 per cent of value and lamb comprises the bulk of the remaining 13 per cent in addition to organic pork, goat and aquaculture.

Poultry products are fairly evenly weighted between eggs and poultry meat in terms of value.

NFF president Fiona Simson said the issues organic farmers faced were common to many farmers.

‘‘Having Australia Organic join the NFF means we can get a more informed understanding of the challenges and opportunities before organic farmers and, as a result, be better able to advocate in the interests of all farmers,’’ Ms Simson said.

Australian Organic (formerly Biological Farmers of Australia or BFA) has developed an organic certification program to independently verify that farmers and processors were producing in accord with organic standards.

The organisation’s Australian Certified Organic Bud logo is the oldest organic certification mark in the country.