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Organic Advisory Service Meeting for Hawkes Bay

Havelock North community Centre, Te Mata Road, Havelock North, Thursday 1pm -4pm, May 11,

With the recently announced Government funding for an Organics Advisory Service, the organic sector umbrella organisation, Organics Aotearoa New Zealand, is having a consultation workshop at the Havelock North Community Centre, 1-4pm Thursday May 11, to help design how an advisory service would best work for the organic sector.

Research and Development will also be covered and the free meetings are open to all.

To hear about developments in the organic sector and be part of the process, all primary producers, processors, researchers, and consultants are invited whether organic or not, as the information gathered is to design an organic advisory service for both existing organic producers and those contemplating a move to organics.

Organics Aotearoa New Zealand (OANZ) in representing key organic organisations and sector groups, has started the design process with this nationwide series of regional meetings. OANZ has a goal of $1 billion in organic sales by 2013 and Government is supporting this with both seed funding for OANZ and the Advisory Service funding.

It is anticipated that with the OANZ Organic Advisory Service design team already at work, the first stage of an Advisory Service should get under way soon after the Government funding is released later in the year.

As well as holding workshops, OANZ is conducting personal interviews. OANZ has already collated and written a status report on much of the existing organic advice sources and available research information.

Frank van Steensel, Advisory Project Team Leader said that “the team will be asking for the type of information needed and what advice methods have worked in the past? What approaches might work particularly well now? What is required in particular regions or sectors?”

“For example, the approach might entail small farmer learning groups with a facilitator, the internet, one on one interaction with an experienced farmer advisor, model farms… what will work the best?”

For those unable to attend the regional meetings, an online questionnaire is available for participants to complete at http://www.e-campbell.net/oanz/

There is also a link off most of New Zealand’s organic websites with information with workshop dates and venues, and the questionnaire.

www.organicnz.org , www.biodynamic.org.nz , www.bio-gro.co.nz , www.organicfarm.org.nz , www.sustainable.org.nz .


ENDS

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