By Ferliza ContratistaPublished on November 16, 2018
CEBU CITY, November 13 (PIA)–Around 2,000 agriculture sector stakeholders are in Cebu for the three day 15th National Organic Agriculture Congress (NOAC).
The activity spearheaded by the Department of Agriculture (DA) has the theme “Organic Agriculture : Advancing the Local Food Culture Movement in the Philippines.
DA Undersecretary Ariel Cayanan assured the participants that the Department is trying its best to convince agencies assigned to accredit organic products to facilitate accreditation to make it easier and more affordable for the agricultural stakeholders.
“Especially the farmers, who are always the receiving end of any movement of prices of any variable in the market, accreditation for their organic products should be easier,” Cayanan said.
He said at the end of the three day convention, the participants will pass a resolution which will now lessen the process of organic product accreditation.
Based on Republic Act 10068 or the Organic Act of the Philippines 2010, only two agencies were tasked to give the accreditation, the Negros Island Certification (NICERT) and Organic Certification Center of the Philippines (OCCP) before it gets approved by the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Products (BAFPS).
The process he said will take several months and would cost P60,000 to P100,000 for every product to be accredited.
The resolution will be submitted to the National Organic Agriculture Board (NOAB) which will then lobby to the House of Congress.
Senator Cynthia Villar, in her video message said, she will work hard for her proposed amendment to be approved.
“Sisiguradohin natin na magiging mura na ang pag certify (We will make sure that the Certification will be cheaper),” Villar said in her recorded message which was applauded by the participants.
It is the second time that NOAC was done in Cebu. The first time was during the 9th NOAC in 2012 held at Mandaue City.(fcc/PIA7-Cebu)