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IMPORTANT NOTIFICATION OF CHANGE TO THE CERTIFICATION OPTIONS
ACO is changing the way we offer our certification programs.

ACO currently certifies all Operators to the National Standard for Organic & Biodynamic Produce (National Standard) and the Australian Certified Organic Standard (ACOS).

Certification to both standards has been a condition of our licence agreement with Australian Organic Limited (AOL) who own the ACOS, and Australia’s most widely recognised organic mark, the Bud Logo.

ACO are committed to providing our Operators with the certification options that are most appropriate for their business.

From 1 July 2021, you will have the option to certify to the National Standard only.

ACO also continues to strongly support the work of AOL as the Peak Industry Body.
The Industry Development Levy (IDL) paid by ACOS certified Operators is the principal source of funding for AOL and the important work they do on behalf of the organic industry. This work includes representation to government on key matters relating to biosecurity, trade and regulation. The IDLs have also funded the progress in domestic regulatory reform and AOL has been the driving force behind the Government recently convening the Organic Industry Advisory Group. For more information on what your IDL fee supports click this link: 
https://austorganic.com/the-bud-license/

Further information about the benefits of continuing with your ACOS certification can be found here: https://austorganic.com/industry/certification-and-standards/standards/acos/

If you choose not to continue with ACOS certification but would like to continue contributing toward the activities of the Peak Body, an annual membership with AOL is available with details at the following link: https://austorganic.com/membership/


Please also note that AOL have significantly reduced the IDL amounts payable for the majority of Producers. The following changes to the IDL Tier levels are effective as at 1 July 2021:

Producer Levies as at 1 July 2021

 
 Producer Tiers   Gross Organic Sales   Annual IDL  Payable 
 Producer 1  $0 - $50,000  $ Nill
 Producer 2  $50,001 - $350,000  $500
 Producer 3  $350,001 - $1M  $2,000
 Producer 4  $1,000,001 - $5M  $3,000
 Producer 5  $5,000,001 - $20M  $4,000
 Producer 6  >$20M  $6,000
 

There are no changes to the Processor/ Wholesaler Levies.
  
 Processor/ Wholesaler Tiers  Gross Organic Sales   Annual IDL  Payable 
 Processor 1  $0 - $50,000  $330
 Processor 2  $50,001 - $100,000  $440
 Processor 3  $100,001 - $200,000  $495
 Processor 4  $200,001 - $300,000  $825
 Processor 5  $300,001 - $400,000  $1,155
 Processor 6  $400,001 - $500,000  $1,485
 Processor 7  $500,001 - $600,000  $1,815
 Processor 8  $600,001 - $700,000  $2,145
 Processor 9  $700,001 - $800,000  $2,475
 Processor 10  $800,001 - $900,000  $2,805
 Processor 11  $900,001 - $1,000,000  $3,135
 Processor 12  $1,000,001 - $1,200,000  $3.630
 Processor 13  Over $1,200,001  $4,440

If you have any questions in relation to this matter, please contact us on           
07 3350 5706 or email us at
 info@aco.net.au

 

DAWE NOTIFICATIONS
Please note the following important notifications from the Department of Agriculture, Water, and the Environment.
  1. Commencement of new export legislation on 28 March 2021 (2021-01)
    https://www.agriculture.gov.au/export/controlled-goods/organic-bio-dynamic/organic-notices/2021/2021-01

     
  2. The organic goods certificate (2021-02) https://www.agriculture.gov.au/export/controlled-goods/organic-bio-dynamic/organic-notices/2021/2021-02
     
  3. Japan – Organics: Japanese Agricultural Standard for organic livestock products to include organic turkey (2021-03https://www.agriculture.gov.au/export/controlled-goods/organic-bio-dynamic/organic-notices/2021/2021-03
     
  4. Great Britain – Organics: Labelling Rules (2021-04)
    https://www.agriculture.gov.au/export/controlled-goods/organic-bio-dynamic/organic-notices/2021/2021-04

NEW ACOS

Further to our notification on 19 March 2021, Australian Organic Limited (“AOL”) have published a revised version of the Australian Certified Organic Standard (“ACOS”) following an extensive industry consultation and public review.
 
A digital edition of ACOS 2021 can be downloaded from AOL’s website at the following link:
https://austorganic.com/industry/certification-and-standards/standards/acos/
This revised version of the Standard is effective from the 1st of March 2021. Operators certified to the ACOS are required to update their Organic Management Plan in line with the changes in the Standard by 30 June 2021.
 
ACO will verify the effective implementation of the changes to your Organic Management Plan in accordance with the ACOS after 30 June 2021. A copy of the change log that outlines the differences between the 2019 and 2021 versions of the standard is attached for your convenience. A summary of the important changes is detailed below. Please note, this is not a comprehensive list of the changes and we strongly recommend that operators read it in conjunction with the change log and the standard.
 
Cropping/Horticulture

  • Formal approval by the certification body is required for the use of synthetic structure coverings, mulches, fleeces, insect netting, silage wrapping, weed matting. (4.2.4, 4.2.5)
  • Time frame included in clause to achieve greater than 5% biodiversity within 5 years of achieving certification. (4.6.2)

 
Livestock

  • Removal of allowance for eggs to become re-certified after treatment of broilers. (Table 5a)
  • Removal of allowance for dairy calves to become re-certified up to four weeks old. (Table 5b)
  • Case-by-case approval for mulesing by the Certification Body (CB) is now required and can be allowed only where alternative measures are not available. (5.1.18)
  • Non‐organic, agricultural origin feed supplements may be used up to a daily maximum of 5% of dry matter intake, by mass, and only where organic alternatives are unavailable. A specific Derogation approved by the CB for such use is required. (5.1.28)
  • Annex II Livestock treatments & inputs (Addition)
  • Amino Acids – Natural (Allowed)
  • Amino Acids - Synthetic (Restricted) ‐ methionine only, for poultry general use is allowed. For pigs, a specific Derogation is required from the CB prior to use.
  • Annex II Livestock treatments & inputs addition (Amendment)
  • Update to include monosodium forms of Flourosilicate to be used on a restricted basis.
  • Annex V Biodynamic Standard (Amendment)
  • Animals used for biodynamic production and certification should be born and raised on a certified biodynamic farm as part of an indigenous herd. The bringing in of breeding stock from outside sources, other than certified biodynamic livestock, is allowed however such animals may never be sold as biodynamic.

 
Processor

  • The clause regarding allowances for warehousing, preparation or related facilities or equipment that are required for use on a one-off basis has been removed. (6.1.36)
  • Clauses related to Durable Food Stuffs, Perishables (Fruits, Vegetables) & Wet Processing, Miscellaneous Processed Products, Natural Fibres/Textiles have been removed. (6.3, 6.4, 6.5, 6.7)
  • The clause regarding Internal feeding of bees now includes the requirement of testing honey to ensure it is free of American Foul Brood Disease. (7.1.12)



Mushroom production:

  • Clause now includes the requirement to seek a Derogation from the Certification Body for use of non-organic spawn. (7.4.6)

 
Processor Biodynamic (Addition to Standard)

 

  • For processed food products, where a minimum of 100% of all ingredients (excluding water and salt) come from certified biodynamic sources, reference may be made to “100% biodynamic” on the label.

 
Other

 

  • Clauses specific to cottage industry have been removed from the standard. (Section 6)
  • Products intended for application to the skin or oral cavity of domestic animals may be certified to this Standard, noting the allowances listed within Section 6.4.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT CERTIFICATION OF WINE TO THE USDA NOP STANDARD

There are additional requirements and restrictions under the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) Standard for certification of Wine. 

For a product to be certified to the USDA NOP Standard the entire supply chain needs to be certified to the USDA NOP Standard, this includes the following:

  • Producers
  • Processors/Contract Processors
  • Re-packers
 
Use of Sulfites in USDA NOP certified wine and labelling requirements
 
Please be aware that wine containing added sulfites cannot be labelled as Organic.  
 
Wine containing added sulfites may be labelled as “made with organic grapes”. 
 
The following labelling requirements apply.
 
The products labelled as ‘made with organic’ may include the following details: 
  • The statement: “Made with organic (specified ingredients)”: Provided, That, the statement does not list more than three organically produced ingredients; or
     
  • The seal, logo, or other identifying mark of the certifying agent that certified the handler of the finished product.
 
The products labelled as ‘made with organic’ must include the following details
  • In the ingredient statement, identify each organic ingredient with the word, “organic,” or with an asterisk or other reference mark which is defined below the ingredient statement to indicate the ingredient is organically produced. Water or salt included as ingredients cannot be identified as organic.
     
  • On the information panel, below the information identifying the handler or distributor of the product and preceded by the statement, “Certified organic by ACO Certification LTD” or similar phrase, identify the name of the certifying agent that certified the handler of the finished product.
     
  • Agricultural products in packages certified as ‘made with organic grapes’ must not display the USDA seal.

 
Prohibited processing aids in the USDA NOP Standards for winemaking
 
Chitosan
Chitosan is determined to be synthetic and is prohibited for use in Organic wine destined for the US market. 
 
Potassium Metabisulfite
Potassium Metabisulfite is prohibited for use in Organic wine destined for the US market. 
 
If you would like any further clarification or technical assistance please do not hesitate to contact the ACO Office.

REMINDER FOR KOREAN CERTIFICATION PROGRAM


AUDIT REQUIREMENT FOR OPERATORS CERTIFIED TO THE KOREAN ORGANIC REGULATIONS
 
The Korean Organic Standards require at least 2 audits annually i.e. full annual audit and an additional follow up audit. Over the last 2 years, ACO has worked closely with the Korean Government to exempt Australian operators from the mandatory requirement of two audits.
 
The Korean Government has now instructed ACO to implement the requirement to conduct a minimum of two audits annually for operators certified to the Korean Organic Regulation. Starting from 01 January 2021, ACO will conduct the mandatory follow up audit during the year in addition to the annual audit for the Korean Certification Program.
 
To comply with the requirement, ACO will first endeavour to complete the additional Korean audit as an unannounced audit. An unannounced audit will be conducted throughout the year for all operators certified to the Korean Organic Standards. The unannounced audit will also cover compliance with other applicable standards e.g. National Standard, EU, NOP and will be at no additional cost to Operators.
 
If the operator is not available for an unannounced audit, ACO will schedule a follow up audit for an additional cost of $550.
 
Please contact the ACO Office if you have any further questions.

FRESHCARE UPDATES

ACO has started Freshcare FSQ4.2 Audits from 3 May 2021.

If the business is experiencing hardship and/or there are extenuating circumstances which have resulted in them not being fully prepared for their FSQ4.2 audit, please contact ACO to make alternate arrangements.
 
FSQ4.2 Transition Resources
 
Information to assist the transition to FSQ4.2 is available here:
www.freshcare.com.au/standards/fsq4-2
 
Additional FSQ4.2 resources including worked examples and templates for record keeping can be downloaded from your FreshcareOnline user access. If you have any questions regarding the transition to FSQ4.2, or require assistance accessing resources, please contact Ph: 1300 853 508 or E: info@freshcare.com.au
PUBLIC COMMENTS NOW OPEN TO ALTER THE NATIONAL STANDARD

Please note the following submissions to amend the National Standard are now open for public
comment on the OISCC website:

Submission 2021.04.01.01 - Request to alter Bee Products NS 1.23.3
Decrease the distance from five kilometres to three kilometres that hives must be from any
prohibited substances.

Submission 2021.04.11.01 - Request to alter Livestock Breeds and Breeding NS 1.15 & 1.15.1
Change proposed to Livestock breeding in regard to semen sexing in dairy cattle.

Submission 2021.04.30.01 - Request to alter NS Appendix F Waxing of citrus fruits
Change proposed to conditions stipulated regarding waxing of citrus fruits.

Further details are available on the OISCC website.
https://oiscc.org/national-standards-subcommittee/current-submissions/
 
Public comments will close on 14th August 2021 and can be made either online at www.oiscc.org or email
info@oiscc.net

 

CALL FOR NOMINATIONS FOR THE NATIONAL STANDARDS SUB-COMMITTEE
To the broader Australian Organic Industry The Organic Industry Standards and Certification Council (OISCC) has a License Deed with the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment (DAWE) for the management of the National Standard for Organic and Bio-Dynamic Produce (NS).
 
OISCC complies with the License Deed through the National Standards sub-Committee (NSsC).
 
Bi-annual nominations for the NSsC are now open and will close on Monday, 19th July 2021.
 
The NSsC’s charter is to:
• Oversee the maintenance and revision of the National Standard through regular review; and
• receive applications to amend the National Standard on matters concerning the National Standard; and
• report to OISCC on submissions received; and
• ensure that evaluation of submissions is undertaken in a transparent, impartial and non-partisan manner.
 
OISCC encourages all to consider applying. It is important that the NSsC has a divergent range of skills and experiences, ranging from certified producers, processors and retailers to researchers, scientists, consumers, consultants, retailers and environmentalists.
 
There are four vacancies for committee members for a 2 year term commencing at the NSsC 2 day meeting in October (Covid permitting). There are 3 other quarterly meetings per year which are virtual meetings.
 
Committee members are remunerated for their attendance as well as all costs associated with any face-to-face meetings.
 
Existing committee members who are due to retire are eligible to re-nominate, as are any other interested persons.
 
Applicants must provide their curriculum vitae along with a history of their work experience as well as names and contact details of two referees.
 
Nomination forms and Terms of Reference are available by emailing
info@oiscc.net
 
Nominations will close on 30 July 2021, with an independent selection panel to determine successful nominations which is endorsed by OISCC

WELCOME TO NEW OPERATORS

Cert No. Name Group Ind. Group
13185 The Happy Farm Producer Horticulture
13186 Mercer Wines Processor Wine Making
13187 Yelverton Winery Processor Wine Making
13188 Fernnest Pty Ltd Processor Food
13189 Lennox Head Organics Producer Horticulture
13190 Australian Pet Organics Processor Pet Food
13191 Delfine Pty Ltd Producer Viticulture
13192 Accolade Wines Australia Ltd Handler, Processor Wholesaler, Wine Making
13193 Garry Becker Family Trust Producer Cropping
13194 La Colline Pty Ltd Producer Viticulture
13195 Freed Beverages Handler Licensee Processor, Wholesaler
13196 The Happy Nut Pty Ltd Processor Food
13197 Chaya Green Tea Handler Importer
13198 Mansfields Pty Ltd Processor Food
13199 Gippsland Cheese Handler Wholesaler
13200 Kochii Eucalyptus Oil Pty Ltd Processor Independent Contract Processor
13201 Saba Stringers Stores Processor Food, Restaurant
13202 One Collective Group Handler Wholesaler
13204 Ozcare Bio Active Processor Cosmetics, Food
13205 Specialty Flavours & Fragrances Handler Wholesaler
13206 Preshafood Pty Ltd Processor Food
13207 Hereward Farming Company Producer Cropping, Livestock
13208 Hebron Farm Processor, Producer Food, Horticulture
13209 Pleasance Herb Seeds Producer Horticulture, Nursery Production
13210 Minas Hill Coffee Pty Ltd Handler Importer, Wholesaler
13211 Performance Feeds Pty Ltd Handler Allowed Inputs
13212 Femmé Organic Handler Wholesaler
13213 Lagoona Farm Producer Cropping
13214 Flying Fish Winery Processor Wine Making
13216 FreshFood Corporation Pty Ltd Processor Food
13217 Infuse Bottling Processor Food
13218 MJ & LE Everest Producer Horticulture
13219 Goraw Desserts Processor Food
13220 North Star Organic Garlic Pty Ltd Producer Horticulture
13221 Loom WG Pty Ltd Processor Wine Making
13222 CAVU Distilling Processor Food
13223 Ausoil Pty Ltd Processor Allowed Inputs
13224 Organic Sunrise Foods Processor Food
13225 Summerville Cattle Company Pty Ltd Producer Cropping
13226 MP Comerford Producer Cropping, Livestock
13227 Tasic Pure Oils Processor Cosmetics
13228 Sara Dagres Handler Wholesaler
13229 Enartis Pacific Pty Ltd Handler Importer
13230 Spice Zen Processor Food
13231 CQ Compost Processor Allowed Inputs
13232 Megan Potter Handler Retailer
13234 CGS Pharma Processor Food
13235 The Earthing Project Producer Horticulture
13236 Caravela Coffee Australia Pacific Pty Ltd Handler Importer
13237 K & S Casben Producer Livestock
13238 Anakardia Processor Food
13239 Winton Saleyard Handler Wholesaler
13241 Shanaun Pty Ltd Producer Biodynamic, Cropping, Horticulture
13242 Source Natural Trading Pty Ltd Processor Cosmetics, Food
13243 RJ Lihou & FJ Sampson Producer Cropping, Livestock
13244 Mt Macquarie Pastoral Trust Producer Livestock
13245 Best Bottlers Pty Ltd Processor Independent Contract Processor
13246 Naturex Australia Pty Ltd Handler Wholesaler
13247 Nichols Poultry Producer Livestock
13248 Passing Winds Organics Producer Horticulture
13249 Lockyer Produce Pty Ltd Processor Independent Contract Processor
13250 Wholesale Horticulture Group PTY LTD Processor Allowed Inputs
13251 Red Dot Harvest Pte Ltd Processor Food
13252 Balance Nation Pty Ltd Handler Licensee Procesor
13253 Little Clover Organics Producer Horticulture
13254 Medipaq Processor Food
13256 Real Dairy Australia Pty Ltd Handler, Processor Food, Wholesaler
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