Originally published on September 12, 2019 on Canada Organic Trade Association’s website
September 12, 2019 (Ottawa) — The Canada Organic Trade Association (COTA) is thrilled to announce the launch of their new Support Organic Change Fund to commemorate ten successful years of organic growth during this year’s 10th anniversary of Organic Week. Organic Week is Canada’s largest consumer organic education campaign, running nationally September 9-15th.
With a booming $5.4 billion in sales, Canada is the sixth largest organic market in the world. Yet, demand continuously outpaces supply, despite double digit production growth. Two thirds of Canadians purchase organic products weekly and organic is the fastest growing part of the Canadian agriculture landscape. These facts are both extremely positive for the Canadian organic industry, yet without continued efforts to train organic techniques and support Canadian farmers to transition to organic, Canada may experience a lost opportunity.
To support the growth of organic farming in Canada to meet demand, the Support Organic Change Fund will:
- Subsidize up to forty organic certification fees for plant-based farms (maximum $1,000 subsidy per year) in 2019.
- Invest in developing an online educational curriculum to train farmers wishing to transition to organic methods.
“With the aim of supporting the continued growth of organic farming in Canada, the Canada Organic Trade Association is pleased to announce the Support Organic Change Fund to address barriers identified by the industry,” said Tia Loftsgard, executive director of the Canada Organic Trade Association.
The fund was made possible due to Seeds of Change®, a 100% organic brand, approaching COTA to support the growth of more organic farming in Canada. Seeds of Change® will donate 1% of net proceeds from the sale of their Seeds of Change products to the Support Organic Change Fund for a period of three years.
“The leadership shown by Seeds of Change® has provided the incubator revenue to launch this industry-wide initiative. We invite the whole of industry and supportive consumers to donate towards the long-term success of the Fund to support the organic sector and our Canadian agricultural landscape’s health and wellbeing,” said Tia Loftsgard.
Canadians are celebrating a major milestone in Canada this year: the 10th year anniversary of the Canada Organic Regime coming into effect as a Federal regulation, overseen by Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) in our country. Consumers recognize and trust organic products with the CFIA-owned organic logo as being free from prohibited pesticides, genetically engineered (GMO) ingredients, and preservatives and colourings. These are all banned by the Organic Standards. Organic is a positive method of production that respects animal welfare and uses environmentally friendly production techniques.
About the Canada Organic Trade Association
The Canada Organic Trade Association is a membership-based association for the organic industry in Canada: representing growers, processors, certifiers, provincial farmers’ associations, importers, exporters, retailers and others throughout the organic value chain. COTA’s mission is to promote and protect the growth of organic trade to benefit the environment, farmers, the public and the economy. COTA brings together the diversity of Canada’s organic sector: from farmer and processor to retail, including food products, fibre and textiles, personal care, and emerging sectors such as organic aquaculture. www.canada-organic.ca
Organic Week is organized by Canada Organic Trade Association, Canadian Organic Growers and the Canadian Health Food Association with the generous support of the following sponsors:
Seeds of Change, PC Organics, Nature’s Path, United Natural Foods (UNFI), Mary’s Gone Crackers, Yorkshire Valley Farms, Crofter’s, Fromagerie L’Ancêtre, duBreton, The Big Carrot, Mill Street Brewery, Canadian School of Natural Nutrition, Pro-Cert Organics, Hippie Snacks, Patience Fruit & Co., Cha’s Organics, Organic Garage and Indigo Natural Products Management.
Heather Badenoch, Village PR, 613-859-8232, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tia Loftsgard, Executive Director, COTA, cellular 613-852-4691, email@example.com