Organic strategies

All aboard! Australian Organic’s Onboarding Program workshop gives organic operators clarity around the certification process and the direction of their businesses.

The most recent one-day Organics – your key to growth and success workshop in September was an incredible success, with delegates from across the organic supply chain learning and sharing ideas about certification and agribusiness development.

The Australian Organic Onboarding Program demystifies the potentially complex certification process and facilitates successful transition to organic certification for agribusinesses through workshops, teleconferences and seminars.

The workshop was co-hosted by Australian Organic and the Agri-Business Development Institute (ABDI), an industry leader in agribusiness development programs. Delegates gained key insights into the organic certification process from Australian Certified Organic certifiers and Australian Organic management. They learnt about the need to plan for the certification period and beyond, the benefits of the auditing process to wider business and farm management, and the immense support offered by Australian Organic.

The day was also an opportunity for like-minded operators to share ideas and concerns; many felt they had not previously had a forum for this.

Delegates left the workshop feeling more confident and optimistic about the certification process and the opportunities through organics, and with greater clarity around the direction they wanted to take their businesses in.

Chris Todd from Rural Boss says, “Everyone here, just taking some time out of their day, away from their business, and coming to an event like this is the first step (to business change).

“I think it’s really important that like-minded people get together at events like this, and go away with fresh ideas, and also understanding that they are not alone. Sometimes it’s tough in business and you have to step outside of your comfort zone and look out (side of your business) and get some fresh ideas.”

Vanessa Brown is a producer from New South Wales. She applied to become certified organic 10 years ago but didn’t pursue it because it seemed too difficult. She says, “I’m very excited about being here today. We are having another revisit (of organic certification) and now we are very keen. We will go through with it this time because we know we have people here who will help us.”

If you’d like more information about the Australian Organic Onboarding Program, see video below for a discussion about the day featuring ABDI director Gordon Stone and Australian Organic’s commercial general manager, Joanne Barber. You can also find out more here.