The National Organic Programme (NOP) launched the Bhutan Organic Guarantee System (BOGS) documents on June 5 at Norkhil Boutique Hotel & Spa.
The launched documents including the standard side and the conformity assessment enables a producer/products to access the Bhutan Organic Mark which is essential for organic farming in the country. It will serve as a manual and guidelines for organic farmers during the certification process.
The Local Organic Assurance System (LOAS) certified products were also launched. LOAS is the system of registration with the NOP and on-going monitoring of organic farmers. They certified three private farms, two farming cooperatives and five products from four Dzongkhags. The certified products include Cassava powder produced by Green Hill Farm of Pemagatshel, xanltoxylm or pepper from Trongsa, rice and watermelon from Zhemgang and tomato and adzuki bean from Thimphu.
On the day, the Best Organic Farmers Award for 2019 was also awarded. The 51-member cooperatives formed in 2015, Gasa Rangzhin Sanam Dhetshen received the best organic farmers’ award of the year. The group focuses on producing potatoes, carrot and garlic and markets their produce in Thimphu. Tashi, the group chairperson said, ‘‘Organic products fetch higher prices. We use compost manure and use onion leaves and walnut tree leaves as pesticides.’’
The award was organised to encourage organic farming and to meet the country’s aim to go 100% organic by 2020. The awards and certifications will now be organised annually.
Reported by Karma Loday with a photo by Choidup Zangpo, ICTD
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