Consumers still confused by inadequate organic labelling

New research from the University of Adelaide suggests that food labelling has still been found to be inadequate by consumers trying to make ethical food choices.

According to the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture Australia (NASAA), many products claiming to be ‘organic’ can only be 100 per cent certified if a label is issued by an approved certifier.

NASAA General Manager Ben Copeman said the difference between products labelled ‘certified organic’ and ‘organic’ had confused Australian consumers when buying high quality organic produce.

“Certified organic products carry a certification logo and certification number. This is the customer’s assurance that there is a third party verification of the integrity of every step of the production process, from paddock to plate”

“On the other hand, products that are merely labelled ‘organic’ may not be free of chemical residue or may be fully imported and packaged in Australia, with the ingredients unlikely to be certified to an internationally recognised standard such as the Australian Standard,” Copeman said.

The National Association for Sustainable Agriculture, Australia (NASAA) was formed in 1986 and supports the education of industry and consumers on organic, biodynamic and sustainable agricultural practices, and was Australia’s first organic certifier.

Today, its certification arm, NASAA Certified Organic (NCO), provides certification and inspection services to assist Certified Organic operators access every organic market in the World. 

NCO is the largest certifier of agricultural land in the world. NCO certifies more than 1,000 operations in 13 countries, certifying some 12m ha of agricultural land worldwide.


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