Organic Product Standards in India
Organic Product Standards in India | Organic products are grown under a system of agriculture without the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides with an environmentally and socially responsible approach. Majority of the countries have their own standards to define what products qualify as organic products. In India, organic products are certified by including National Program for Organic Production (NPOP), Participatory Guarantee System (PGS) and Javik Bharat (for organic food products).
India Organic – National Program for Organic Production (NPOP) Standard
The National Programme for Organic Production grants organic farming certification through a process of third party certification. Products that meet NPOP standards can have – India Organics label printed on them. However, since India Organic is third party certification, besides India Organic logo it would also have Name and logo of the Accredited Certification Body & Accreditation Number.
Under National Program for Organic Production System, a product can be labelled as Organic if:
- In case of single ingredient product where all requirements been met as per the specified standards can be labelled as ‘Organic’.
- In case of multi ingredient product where min. 95% of ingredients are of certified origin, can be labelled as ‘Certified Organic’.
PGS-India Organic – Participatory Guarantee System (PGS) for India
PGS-India programme for local and domestic market, a farmer group centric certification system, was launched by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare with an aim to make the certification system affordable and accessible without the need for third party certification agencies.
PGS-India is a quality assurance initiative that is locally relevant, emphasize the participation of stakeholders, including producers and consumers and operates outside the frame of third party certification.
Both the programmes (NPOP and PGS-India) are independent of each other and products certified under one system cannot be processed or labeled under another system. While NPOP certified products can be traded in export and in domestic market including imports, PGS-India certified products can be traded only in domestic market.
Food Safety and Standards (Organic Foods) Regulations, 2017
Organic foods standards are regulated by Food Safety and Standards (Organic Foods) Regulations, 2017 notified under the provisions of Section 22 of the Food Safety Standards Act, 2006. The Food Safety and Standards (Organic Foods) Regulations, 2017 are based on the standards of National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP) and Participatory Guarantee System (PGS-India). However, direct sales of Organic Food by the small original producer or producer organisation to the end consumer exempt from verification of compliance.
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