Bonn, Germany, December 15th, 2005

Brazilian Government Sets Sights High for Organic Agriculture

BioFach America Latina a Big Success

BioFach America Latina, Latin America’s largest organic agriculture trade fair, took place from November 16th to 18th in Rio de Janeiro, attracting 3193 visitors from 23 countries and 156 exhibitors, 35 of which were international.

Brazilian Minister of Agriculture Roberto Rodrigues gave a keynote speech outlining goals of the Brazilian government to dramatically increase organic production and to establish a national organic seal. The Brazilian Export Promotion Agency (APEX) also launched a project called the Brazil Organics Project to promote and enhance the export of organic products.

Brazilian Minister of Agriculture Roberto Rodrigues announced in his keynote speech the establishment of a government seal guaranteeing the origin and quality of organic agricultural products, placing Brazil in a competitive position to access international markets. Rodrigues said that the government seal will help to facilitate the identification of organic products that currently are certified by private standards. The organic seal is a component of the law 10,831 that deals with organic agriculture and was sanctioned by President Luiz Inácio Lula Da Silva in December 2003. “The regulation will provide a basis for the conceptual techniques and for the seal and other instruments that will stimulate organic agriculture. In next the three to four months we will finalize the definition of the regulation and, therefore, the seal and other instruments for the sector,” added Rodrigues.

According to the minister, organic agriculture in Brazil represents less than 3% of total agricultural pproduction in the country. "There is enormous room for growth (in the organic sector), and we intend to achieve 20% organic in next the five to six years, stimulated mainly by small producers," Rodrigues affirmed.

In addition, the Brazilian Export Promotion Agency (APEX) has invested over $800,000 in the Brazil Organics Project, in part to increase the participation of Brazilian organic companies at BioFach organic trade fairs in Nuremberg, the US and Japan, and to link buyers and journalists to organic projects in Brazil by supporting their participation at BioFach America Latina. “The project aims to take national organic products to be shown abroad. We are supporting the necessary space in order to have those products shown on several continents,” explains Ming Liu, manager of the Brazil Organics Project.

IFOAM Executive Director Angela B. Caudle expressed support for the Brazilian government’s initiatives, stating “IFOAM commends the Brazilian government’s initiatives. IFOAM offers the full support of its global network to aid Brazil in achieving its goals.”

IFOAM is proud to be the patron of BioFach fairs worldwide.

For further information, please contact Neil Sorensen, Communications and Events, at +49-228-92650-16.

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