Requirements for the export of organic product vary dependent on the level of recognition between trading countries of certification and product origin.
There are differing requirements for those based Within Australia, which fall within the provisions of the Department of Agriculture (DOA), as to those based Outside Australia. In addition, there are specific requirements for the export of product to Japan, Canada and the USA, where stand-alone national organic programs are administered.
NASAA is your point of contact to advise on specific certification requirements for the export of organic products.
Under the Export Control Act 1982 and the Export Control Orders 1997, the Department of Agriculture (DOA) delegates the issuance of export certificates for organic products to certification bodies such as NASAA.
Exporters of organic product, whether bulk or processed, must be certified with a DOA-accredited certification organisation such as NASAA, unless operators are exporting goods already packed for the end consumer by a certified processor or packer.
An original DOA certificate is required for all organic exports out of Australia, irrespective of whether the importing country requires an 'organic export certificate' or not. There are several types of certificates that can be obtained from NASAA or its subsidiary company NASAA Certified Organic (NCO) entry to EU countries, entry to Switzerland, and entry to other non-EU countries.
Certificates must be filled out by the exporter and returned to NASAA for authorisation prior to the shipment date of the produce.
International operations (based outside Australia) fall outside the governance of the Department of Agriculture (DOA).
The export of product, therefore, will depend on the individual requirements of the destination country, and the level of authorisation of importing agents within those countries. For example, within the EU there are two recognised types of organic imports from third countries. One involves the acceptance of the organic standard applied in an equivalent country; the other requires importers to be individually authorised for import.
The EU recognises Australia and five other countries (Argentina, Costa Rica, Israel, New Zealand and Switzerland) as equivalent, ensuring direct market access for all organic products exported from these countries. Outside of these countries, however, exporters would need to ensure the individual authorisation of importers of products.
NASAA is your point of contact to advise on requirements for export for operators based outside Australia.
There are additional organic product requirements for export entry into US markets. Exporters must meet additional accreditation requirements under the US National Organic Program (USNOP).
NASAA is your first point of contact to advise on the requirements for, and latest updates on, the USNOP Standards and Guidelines. Accreditation through these programs can be undertaken as a separate exercise, or in addition to existing NASAA licenses.
NASAA Certified Organic is accredited by Japan MAFF for JAS certification. For export to Japan using the JAS Organic label, you must be certified under JAS.
Application information is available from our office or download the forms here:
|Information Pack||Application Form|
Operators wishing to access the Canadian Organic Market can do so with a US NOP certification and an Equivalence Attestation from NCO.
The Equivalence Agreement signed between the US and Canada (USCOEA) enables operators certified by NCO under the US NOP to label organic goods for export to Canada providing the following conditions are met:
- The Chain of Custody must be fully NOP compliant – this means that for any product to be exported to Canada, each part of the chain must be NOP certified.
- An Equivalence Attestation is required to accompany organic raw and processed products shipped to Canada under the NOP Organic Certification. This is obtained from NCO and is in the form of a certificate. This is a requirement so that products crossing the borders are verified to meet the terms of the USCOEA and must appear on documentation travelling with the shipment.
- Organic labelling rules in Canada are different to that of the US. US labels can have '100% Organic' and 'Made with Organic' on the front panel, but Canada does not allow this. Canadian labels have to be bilingual (i.e. French and English).
To apply for export approval to Canada under NOP certification, please send details of the products to be exported and the label to be used. NCO will produce an Equivalence Attestation for the relevant products. Labels must be approved by NCO prior to export to Canada. The NOP label may be used. NCO may authorise use of the Canadian label.