On Dec. 23, 2020, President Rodrigo Duterte signed Republic Act No. 11511, or the Act Amending the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010. Its goal is to make organic produce more accessible and affordable by having the government fully subsidize their international certification for a year.
Qualified farmers and fisherfolk will also be invited and prioritized in government-initiated or sponsored trade and business marketing events for local produce. Relaxed sanctions for the mislabeling of organic products will also be carried out, with a written warning for first offense and suspension of accreditation for the second offense.
Under the newly enacted law, a participatory guarantee system will be established. This is a locally-focused quality assurance system developed and practiced by people engaged in organic agriculture. The National Organic Agriculture Program-National Program Coordinating Office will also be created to oversee the implementation of the National Organic Agriculture Program. The law will likewise restructure, strengthen, and empower the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards in providing assistance to farmers and fisherfolk.
According to the Philippine News Agency, a registration of organic inputs, such as organic soil amendments and organic bio-control agents will be issued, as well as a registration of integrated organic farms with multiple commodities and production, and that of organic input producers. Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said the law increases the potential income of organic farmers and fisherfolk, and promotes food self-sufficiency.
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