New program to help you farm organically

woman leaning on fenceOrganic farming may be the third fastest-growing industry in Australia and expected to double in size over the next five years, but it’s not always easy to achieve and keep organic certification.

The country’s largest certifier, Australian Certified Organic, receives hundreds of applications each year but not all are successful. Australian Organic recognises producers need more support to become certified and be a profitable and sustainable business. We have launched a new onboarding program that holds your hand every step of the way to make sure you’re successful.

The program is in collaboration with the Agribusiness Development Institute, a specialist company that provides the knowledge and know-how to work with you to ensure you get your business in its best possible shape.

Generally when you approach Australian Certified Organic for certification you receive the 100-page Australian Certified Organic Standard to get acquainted with and on top of that you have to fill out applications and prepare for audits. It really can be a daunting start.

The onboarding program through teleconferences and face-to-face meetings helps you get through this; however, it isn’t just about helping you with compliance and paperwork – it also helps you prepare for audit and fast tracks your learning about running a certified organic business.

The program will connect you with other growers and let you know what market options you have available to you in your industry. The organic industry is still relatively small and relies on networks and connections – it helps to be prepared before you’re certified organic or ready to sell.

You’re going to have questions like: When am I ready to understand yields? How do I market my produce? Where do I go for a good agronomist? How do I help staff understand organics? The onboarding program can help you.

I’m already certified – can it help my business?

Yes. The Australian Organic Onboarding program still has a lot to offer you, particularly if you want to develop your markets and get connected.

Tapping into other markets, for example, China, European Union and United States, or even supplying supermarket chains in Australia, is not as difficult as you might have experienced or think, and remember the team at Australian Organic is here to help you even after you become certified.

The program gives you opportunities that will guide you to meet the needs of the increasingly profitable market niches in organics – and we will let you know what they are. From there you can review and develop the best and most effective systems and processes to help you operate in those niche markets.

We would also like to help you short cut to the right people and resources to expand your business. We have organised guest speakers who will share insights on ways to maximise profitability and growth by targeting the best markets that suit your production system.

The Agribusiness Development Institute has proven experience working within the agricultural market – particularly niche markets – to help businesses. Together we can help you to:

  • Understand the scope and size of the organic market
  • Identify existing opportunities within your business
  • Develop your skills and methods to maximise these opportunities – and be clear about what works best for you
  • Find out about and understand how to meet the needs of the increasingly profitable market niches in organics
  • Review, develop and use the best and most effective systems and processes, as a certified organic grower, to operate in those niches
  • Identify the right people and resources to use to expand your business
  • Maximise opportunities for profitability and growth by targeting the best markets that suit your production system
  • Get the support to make the ongoing organic journey simple and easy.

For more information about the Australian Organic Onboarding program contact Kellie Lewis 07 3350 5716.

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