Just announced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)–the United States has signed an organic equivalency arrangement with Switzerland. As of today, July 10, 2015, organic products certified in the United States or Switzerland may be sold as organic in either country. Representatives from the U.S. organic industry applaud this partnership of two significant organic markets, citing opportunities to strengthen organic trade and benefit the growing organic community.
The organic equivalency arrangement between the two nations will streamline organic trade, strengthen organic agriculture, benefit the growing organic community, and support jobs and businesses on a global scale.
“This partnership reflects the strength of the USDA organic standards, allowing American stakeholders to access the Swiss organic market,” said Anne Alonzo, Administrator of USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service, which oversees the National Organic Program. “The trade arrangements that we’ve achieved are a significant indicator of the strength of the National Organic Program and the value of the USDA organic label.”
USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service has helped farmers and businesses create an industry that today encompasses over 19,000 organic businesses in the United States and accounts for $39 billion annually in U.S. retail sales. Since the beginning of the Obama Administration, the United State has signed five organic equivalency arrangements. Through our arrangements with Canada, the European Union, Japan, and Korea, U.S. organic farmers and businesses have streamlined access to over $35 billion international organic markets. When combined with the $39 billion U.S. organic market, these arrangements have doubled the organic market share for U.S. organic farmers and businesses.
For further information about the importance of organic food, read Layne’s book: Beyond The Mediterranean Diet: European Secrets Of The Super-Healthy.