IFOAM News : July 2006

  1. Bugday of Turkey organizes a 100% ecological market
  2. Organic Agriculture Events in Latin America
  3. IFAT - the global network of fair trade organizations - to hold regional conference in Paris
  4. Association Of Applied Biologists And Colloquium of Organic Researchers Conference: Contributions Invited

1. Call for Submission of background information for a dossier on the contribution of Organic Agriculture to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)

The MDGs were declared by the UN in 2000. Concrete targets were set, e.g. “Ensure environmental sustainability”. The potential contribution Organic Agriculture can make to reach the MDGs, are not yet known well enough. Agriculture will be on the UN Commission on Sustainable Development agenda in 2007/8. The eight MDGs are listed below.

The UN Millennium Development Goals:
  1. Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
  2. Achieve universal primary education
  3. Promote gender equality and empower women
  4. Reduce child mortality
  5. Improve maternal health
  6. Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  7. Ensure environmental sustainability
  8. Develop a global partnership for development

IFOAM’s Objective:
Organic Agriculture can make a distinct impact on reaching the MDGs. However, the potential contributions it can make are not yet concretely known. It is in the organic movement’s best interest that these contributions be recognized and advocated for. IFOAM therefore has commissioned a dossier wherein clearly organic agriculture’s contribution in reaching the MDGs will be outlined and illustrated.

Call for Submissions
Within membership a lot of (background) information related to the MDGs is available. We are therefore inviting you to submit any related information you have developed or know about in this context. We encourage you to circulate this request to your members and affiliates as well. Our intention is to compile this information and to utilize it in the development of our dossier.????

A deadline of August 4th is set for receiving submissions from our members and internal bodies. Please forward all submissions by email to Rachel Horwat at r.horwat@ifoam.org or by mail or fax.

We very much appreciate your participation in this endeavor!
Please note that all materials submitted will be kept by IFOAM and may be used for future advocacy initiatives.

Mailing Address:
IFOAM Head Office
Charles-de-Gaulle-Str. 5
53113 Bonn
Fax: +49-228-92650-99

2. Register for the 1st IFOAM International Conference on Animals in Organic Production

University of Minnesota Continuing Education and Conference Center, St. Paul, MN, USA
August 23rd- 25th 2006
Leading organic livestock researchers and producers from throughout the world will share state-of-science research findings and production information during the three-day event.

Complete information about the conference, including on-line registration, can be found at:

The conference will begin on August 23 with tours of organic livestock farms in the Twin Cities area, including lunch and a tour of the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. http://www.arboretum.umn.edu/

During the evening of August 23, opening remarks will be delivered by Minnesota’s Commissioner of Agriculture, Gene Hugoson, and the UMN’s Dean of Extension, Bev Durgan. The opening keynote will given by Dr. Fred Kirschenmann of Iowa State University’s Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture. Dr. Kirschenmann will discuss, “Animals in an Organic System – Exploring the Ecological, Social, and Economic Functions of Animals in Organic Agriculture.”

Dr. Mette Vaarst, DVM, of the Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences, will speak on “Sustaining Animal Health and Food Safety Through Organic Methods” during the morning keynote on August 24. Dr. Vaarst’s keynote address will be followed by workshops on organic poultry, dairy, sheep, hogs, and beef, as well as organic livestock standards. Groundbreaking research will be presented on differences between antibiotic-resistant bacteria on organic vs conventional livestock farms.

Noted author, researcher, and acclaimed speaker Dr. Temple Grandin will present the evening keynote, which will be held in the North Star Ballroom of the UMN Student Center. Dr. Grandin, an autistic woman who has developed humane livestock handling systems used worldwide, will present “Animals in Translation,” which explores how animals see the world.

The evening of August 24 will conclude with a dance party in the North Star Ballroom, with music provided by The Pheromones!

Dr. David Wallinga, MD, from the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, will give the morning keynote on August 25. Dr. Wallinga will discuss “Antibiotic Resistance and the Organic Alternative.” There will be workshops on humane treatment, biosecurity, animal health, market access, milk quality, and food safety.

The closing keynote will be given by Jim Riddle, the UMN’s Coordinator for Organic Agriculture Outreach, who will discuss “Fostering Organic Livestock Research – Priorities and Preferences.” The program will conclude with reports from session moderators on key findings of the conference, along with a conference resolution, presented by Angela Caudle, IFOAM’s Executive Director.

Sponsors for the conference include Organic Valley, Newman’s Own Organics, Northland Organic Foods, Stonyfield Farm, Indian Herbs, Horizon Organic, FiBL – Research Institute of Organic Agriculture, MOSES – Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Services, Organic Choice, OTA – Organic Trade Association, Aurora Organic Dairy, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, and the University of Minnesota.

Delicious local organic food will be served throughout the conference, with donations from Gardens of Eagan, Organic Valley, Stonyfield Farm, Nancy’s Organic Yogurt, The Wedge, French Meadow Bakery, Coop Partners Warehouse,Cornercopia, and the UMN’s Student Organic Farm on the St. Paul campus, and wine will be donated by Frey Vineyards.

Conference Registration

Registration Fees
200 Euros ($240) for IFOAM affiliates or 250 Euro ($300) for non-members

Online conference registration is available on the IFOAM website. A conference registration brochure is also available, and can be faxed to the IFOAM Head Office.

If you are planning on attending the conference, please register well in advance, as this helps IFOAM to plan catering services and make other arrangements. Please check the United States Visa Requirements for your country.

For questions about registration, please contact Elvin Tan at e.tan@ifoam.org

Further Information
For further information about the conference contact Neil Sorensen,? Communications and Events Manager, at n.sorensen@ifoam.org

Program Coordinator
Jim Riddle
Coordinator for Organic Outreach
University of Minnesota
31762 Wiscoy Ridge Road
Winona, MN 55987
Ph/fax: 507-454-8310
Cell: 507-429-7959
Email: jriddle@hbci.com

3. Reserve the Dates: the 1st IFOAM International Conference on Organic Certification

November 15th-17th 2006
Rome, Italy
The burgeoning number of organic standards and the increasing complexity of organic certification necessitate broad stakeholder consultation to assess and define strategies for moving forward in a unified and systematic way, as many weighty issues face organic certification agencies and thus the organic sector as a whole. Accreditation to the ISO 65 General Requirements for Bodies Operating Product Certification Systems is becoming increasingly common for organic certification bodies.

The conference goal is to improve the performance of organic certification in promoting trade, upholding integrity and assuring consumers of organic products.

Main objectives of the conference
  • Foster dialogue among stakeholders involved in organic certification issues
  • Establish and reinforce networks
  • Set the future direction of organic certification and harmonization
Main issues
  • Inspection and certification techniques
  • GMOs and analysis
  • Small producer certification
  • Certification as a market instrument
  • Private and public partnerships
  • Facilitating organic trade and maintaining integrity
  • Improving inspection and certification systems
  • Certification - future perspectives

Target groups
  • Organic certification bodies worldwide, both governmental and private
  • Organic accreditation bodies, both governmental and private
  • Other governmental supervision and control bodies
  • Consultants
  • Like-minded organizations engaged in ecological and social labeling and certification
For further details about the conference, including opportunities for sponsorship, visit the IFOAM website at
www.ifoam.org or contact Gabriele Holtmann, g.holtmann@ifoam.org.

4. A button to show your affiliation to IFOAM

Promotional buttons are in vogue on the web!
In order to show the internet users your affiliation to IFOAM, you can now display
a button by copying a piece of html code and placing it in the code of your website.
We have created separate buttons for members and associates. You can find them
at http://www.ifoam.org/intranet/outreach/media

5. Interpretation of the IFOAM Accreditation Criteria (IAC 8.2.5)

IAC 8.2.5 which deals with certification of brand name inputs requires that the certification mark when used on products that are “not a certified agricultural organic product” must be accompanied by explanatory language that clarifies the nature of the certification.

The IOAS requested an interpretation from the Norms Management Committee (NMC) clarifying whether the term “certified organic input” can be used on non-agricultural inputs. The NMC is responsible for interpreting the IFOAM Norms and concluded that the term “certified organic input” cannot be used on non-agricultural inputs.

The NMC interpretation of the term “certification mark“ as used in IAC 8.2.5 is that it includes any reference to the certification status, name, program, or certification mark of the respective certification body. That means that the expression „certified organic input“ cannot be used on any kind of certified non-agricultural input.

This interpretation is also published together with other interpretations in the Norms Interpretations Register which can be downloaded from the Norms Documents Library on the OGS section of the IFOAM website.

Technical Correction of IAC 8.2.5

In order to correct a technical error in the IFOAM Accreditation Criteria the word “approval” was removed from the last sentence of IAC 8.2.5.

IAC 8.2.5 now reads:

8.2.5 In cases where the product is not a certified agricultural organic product, the certification mark may only be used when it is accompanied by explanatory language that clarifies the nature of the certification.

As of the 1st of June 2006 this technical correction will have been incorporated in all electronic versions and future print runs of the 2005 IFOAM Accreditation Criteria and Norms. All owners of copies of the IAC and Norms (eletronic and hardcopy) that obtained/purchased the Norms/IAC before that date may download an erratum from the Norms Documents Library on the OGS section of the IFOAM website.

If you have any questions, please contact Matthias Fecht, IFOAM Organic Guarantee System Coordinator at m.fecht@ifoam.org

6. IFOAM is calling for nominations to the IFOAM Criteria Committee

IFOAM is pleased to announce an opportunity to participate in the IFOAM leadership structure.

The IFOAM World Board calls for nominations for one new member of the IFOAM Criteria Committee (CC).? The purpose of calling for nominations is to replace Mwatima Juma, who was elected to the World Board in September, 2005.?

For complete information, please see the Call for Nominations on the IFOAM website at:

7. UNCTAD TRADE AND ENVIRONMENT REVIEW (TER), 2006 focuses on Organic Agriculture

The TER 2006 focuses on environmental and related health requirements and their impact on developing countries´ market access. It examines both the opportunities and challenges presented by these requirements, which are increasingly stringent, complex and multi-dimensional. The Review includes both general and sectoral analyses of the issue, and looks at two sectors where environmental requirements are critical to market access: electrical and electronic equipment and organic agricultural products. The latter issue is addressed in Chapter 3 of the TER and includes commentaries of well know shakers and movers from the IFOAM network.

The TER concludes with a review of recent activities of UNCTAD’s Technical Cooperation and Capacity-Building Programme on Trade, Environment and Development (TED), which also focuses on Organic Agriculture, e.g. the CBTF (Capacity Building Task Force) project on promoting production and trading opportunities for organic agricultural products in East Africa. IFOAM participates as one of the project partners in this project.

The TER can be downloaded here.

8. Genetically engineered animal feed is sneaking into the food chain - demand the right to say "no"!

Since April 2004 food produced via genetic engineering (GE) has to be labelled under EU law. But watch out!

Products derived from animals fed on GE feed – such as eggs, milk and meat - are excluded from the labeling regime.

As a consequence consumers do not know if their eggs, milk and meat come from animals fed GE.

People should have the right to say "no" to genetic engineering. That’s why Greenpeace is campaigning to close the loophole in the EU's GE labelling laws. Their aim is to collect massive support for a petition to the European Commission, which demands consumer labelling for products (milk,eggs, meat) derived from animals fed on GE feed.

Your help to achieve this is essential. Please sign the online petition below.

Click here to sign the petition.

9. Take Action: USDA close to approving genetically engineered plums

he United Sates Department of Agriculture (USDA) is now accepting public comments regarding the commercial approval of a genetically engineered plum, known as "C5." The approval of C5 would be the first widely released genetically engineered (GE) tree in the United States. Approval of C5 will also pave the way for more GE tree and fruit varieties, including peaches, cherries, and apricots. GE tree pollen can drift for several miles, leading to contamination of neighboring organic crops and indigenous trees. The USDA is currently accepting public comments on this issue.

Learn more and Take Action:

10. Global Development Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is seeking Concept Notes

The Global Development Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is seeking Concept Notes for funding a limited number of proposals to evaluate strategies that more effectively link small holder farmers to markets that are efficient and equitable.? This initiative is one part of a larger agricultural strategy that will seek to apply research to crops and cropping systems important to the poor, encourage the development and adoption of improved inputs and encourage improved crop management practices.
The deadline for submission of Concepts Notes is: 5:00 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time on Monday, July 31, 2006. The Concept Notes should be submitted online: www.gatesfoundation.org/ForGrantSeekers/OpenRFPs/GlobalDevelopment.? Contact: GDRFPAG.ValueChain@gatesfoundation.org to discuss any programmatic or logistical issues.
Thank you for your interest.

11. Affiliate Fee Reminder

IFOAM is a democratic not-for-profit organization, and appreciates your timely payment of fees to ensure our continued ability to implement our mission and goals.

If you have not yet paid your affiliate fees for 2006, please send it as soon as possible.

If you need assistance to determine your payment requirements or cannot find your invoice, please contact Gabriele Holtmann, Member Relations Coordinator (g.holtmann@ifoam.org), at your earliest possible convenience.

12. Membership benefits on the IFOAM Intranet

IFOAM is proud to offer various benefits to its affiliates. There are quite a number of tangible benefits either in the form of information or publications provided directly to you, advertisement opportunities exclusively for affiliates or price discounts on conferences and events, IFOAM publications and services offered by partners.

To learn more about and take advantage of the diverse benefits available to you, visit:

If you have any difficulties accessing the Intranet, contact intranet@ifoam.org

Head Office Contact Information
Charles-de-Gaulle-Str. 5
53113 Bonn, Germany
Tel: +49-228-92650-10
Fax: +49-228-92650-99
Email: headoffice@ifoam.org