Western Cape organic and agro-ecological groups unite

In a significant moment last Saturday, members of the Western Cape farming community and broader agricultural industry joined together to endorse the South African Organic Sector Organisation’s (SAOSO) proposed Organic Standards.

“The meeting was really about moving the sector to move towards a more unified, transparent and integrity-rich culture,” explains Brett Sander, a representative of SAOSO who convened the meeting.

“It was also about uniting Western Cape Participatory Guarantee Systems (PGS) groups under PGSSA and SAOSO to build a clear representation for the sector that would allow all practitioners to benefit from the National Government and Continental bodies resolutions, policies and budget.”

The resolution by the floor for the Western Cape to adopt the standard was a great first step forward and will hopefully be followed by a surge of PGSSA and SAOSO membership in the Western Cape.

Dr Scott Drimie, Director of the Southern Africa Food Lab, who helped convene the meeting in close consultation with key actors in the Western Cape noted the challenge of bringing together disparate forces to provide a clear alternative to the dominant system.

“Such work relies on building trust which takes time and a willingness to engage.”