IFOAM: Launch of Policy Toolkit Highlighting Public Support to Organic Agriculture

For the first time ever, a complete global overview of policies supporting organic agriculture has been compiled, and tools for advocates and policy-makers are now available in the ‘Global Policy Toolkit on Public Support to Organic Agriculture’. Published by IFOAM – Organics International, the toolkit can be downloaded free of charge.

Over a two-year period we looked at examples of public support provided to organic agriculture in over 80 countries by gathering and comparing information from various sources including policy makers, academia, consultants, and organic stakeholders.

Andre Leu, President of IFOAM – Organics International points out “The results of this one-of-a-kind study are invaluable for organic advocates, policy-makers and all others who wish to advance agricultural sustainability in their countries.”

There is increasing recognition from consumers, civil society and governments of the environmental, social and economic benefits of sustainable agricultural practices such as organic farming. Various governments now provide public support for organic agriculture, which are reflected in the stories, outcomes, lessons learned and policy recommendations published in a toolkit format.

Calling on organic advocates and policy-makers to share the news of this publication, Markus Arbenz, Executive Director of IFOAM – Organics International, comments,  “We have produced this toolkit to fill a knowledge gap in the area of organic advocacy and policy making. Now policy-makers can learn more about not only why we should support organic agriculture, but also how it can be done.”

The ‘Global Policy Toolkit on Public Support to Organic Agriculture’ includes:

  • The main study report, which presents a comprehensive overview of measures that can be taken by governments at various levels (municipal, regional, national) to promote and support organic agriculture, with examples and advice related to each type of support.
  • Policy summaries are policy briefs on various topics, which can be taken to meetings with policy makers.
  • Power point presentations that help break down the main arguments and successful examples from countries that have effectively implemented policy support measures.

The toolkit also includes a policy template, tips for organic advocates, and a decision aid to help users select the most appropriate support measures.
Paul Holmbeck, Director in Organic Denmark, a contributor to the report who has advised governments and organizations in over 22 countries on organic policy, calls the toolkit a “breakthrough for the organic sector”. He adds, “All over the world, organizations, politicians and ministries are looking for new organic policy ideas. The study and resulting policy toolkit bring us a huge step forward in creating policy that develops organic farming and the organic market, and builds capacity in the organic sector.”

The policy toolkit can be downloaded free of charge here.  Its development was supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and received co-funding from the Swedish International Development Cooperation (SIDA), Hivos, and Bio.inspecta.

For more information, please contact Joelle Katto-Andrighetto Organic Policy & Guarantee Manager, j.katto@ifoam.bio

Source: Press release IFOAM, 22.09.2017