QUEZON CITY – In the spirit of cooperation within the ASEAN region, the Task Forces for the ASEAN Standards for Horticultural Produce and other food crops of high economic value, including organic crops, convened in Bali, Indonesia last April 20-25, 2015. These included the Special Workshop and the 3rd Meeting of the Special Task Force on the ASEAN Standards for Organic Agriculture (STF-ASOA) from the 20th to the 22nd; and the 11th Meeting of the Task Force on the ASEAN Standards for Horticultural Produce and Other Food Crops (TF-MASHP) which occurred from the 23rd to the 25th.

The Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards, in close cooperation with the High Value Crops Development Program, the Agricultural Training Institute and the DA Regional Field Offices (CAR, I and V), conducted Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Caravan Towards AEC 2015 Forum for the first quarter of 2015.

PASAY CITY – The Special Task Force for the Development of ASEAN Standard for Organic Agriculture (TF-ASOA) was convened for the back-to-back workshops aimed at developing Explanatory Notes for the ASOA and the equivalence assessment of national standards against ASOA, held last 2-4 March 2015 at Midas Hotel, Pasay City. The importance of developing the ASOA explanatory notes is to establish common understanding among the ASEAN Member States (AMS) and to explain its requirements, which will serve as a guide for the competent authorities in assessing equivalence with other AMS. Likewise, the equivalence assessment will be the venue for the alignment of the national standards to the ASOA, in aid for the establishment or harmonization efforts of the AMS for their national standards to achieve equivalence.

Pursuant to the Implementing Rules and Guidelines of the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010 (RA 10068), the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards (BAFS) is mandated to perform the following activities:

  • Formulate standards (Section 4)
  • Accredit organic certifying bodies (Section 15)
  • Register organic food and input producers; (Section 16)
  • Serve as the National Organic Agriculture Board Secretariat (Section 10) ; and
  • Foster coordination among various stakeholders and relevant agencies to ensure adoption of Organic Agriculture farming System (Section 11).