Organic demand – led by Dutch
The Netherlands Ambassador to London – Pim Waldeck – has taken the occasion of a brief speech at the Organic and Natural Products Show at London’s Olympia to outline some new organic market policies from the Dutch Government.
Says Ambassador Waldeck –
“The Netherlands seeks to continue to play a significant role in the trade of organic produce. To support the market opportunities, the Dutch Minister of Agricultural, Nature and Food Quality signed in January 2008 a third covenant with representative organisations of supermarkets, specialist stores, branded goods manufacturers, catering, growers, environmental organisations and banks, for which around 50 million Euro has been allocated.
“The government aims to change policy from “push” to “pull”, that is, from stimulating supply to promoting demand as the government believes that market development is primarily the responsibility of the market players themselves whilst the role of the government is to stimulate, provide support and create favourable conditions. This approach is unique in Europe and it is agreed that after 2011 the Covenant’s Task Force, comprising the market players, will continue to promote market development independently.”
”Besides encouraging consumers to buy organic products, the Dutch government will also play its own part in boosting demand. From 2010 onwards all government procurement must be sustainably sourced with a minimum of 40% organic content and the Ministry of Agriculture vowed to source 75% of food at its canteens from organic suppliers. The Ministry strongly believes that organic producers are capable of delivering a full range of products.”
There must be a lesson there somewhere for Defra and the UK Government.
Mr Waldeck also commented on the continuing lack of anything like organic self-sufficiency for the UK. Not that he’s crying into his Heineken about that…