The US and Japan yesterday (26 September) announced that beginning 1 January 2014 organic products certified in Japan or in the US may be sold as organic in either country.
This partnership between two significant organic markets will streamline US farmers' and processors' access to the growing Japanese organic market, benefiting the rapidly growing organic industry and supporting job creation and business growth on a global scale, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said in a statement.
"This partnership reflects the strength of the USDA organic standards, allowing American organic farmers, ranchers, and businesses to access Asia's largest organic market," said US agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack. "It is a win for the American economy and sets the foundation for additional organic agricultural trade agreements in Asia. This partnership provides economic opportunities for farmers and small businesses, resulting in good jobs for Americans across the organic supply chain."
"Today's agreement will streamline access to the growing Japanese organic market for US farmers and processors and eliminate significant barriers for small and medium organic producers, benefiting America's thriving organic industry," added US trade representative Michael Froman. "This represents another key step in strengthening our economic relationship with Japan by boosting agriculture trade between Japan and the United States, leading to more jobs and economic benefits for American farmers and businesses in this important sector."
The organics sector in the US and Japan is valued at more than US$36bn combined, and rising every year.