Organic agriculture has been increased rapidly world wide in last few years. The global organic food sale was estimated to be US$26 billion in 2003. Japan has the third largest market for organic foods after EU and the USA. In Asia total area under organic management shared only 0. 33 percent in six continents of the world, however it increased to be 4 percent in 2004 which is a ten-fold increase in 3 years.
According to IFOAM (2003), land area under organic management in Asia was the largest in China (301,295 ha) followed by Indonesia (40,000ha), Sri Lanka (15,215 ha), Japan (5,083 ha), Thailand (3,429 ha), Pakistan (2,009), Taiwan (1,092 ha), Republic of Korea (902 ha) and Malaysia (131 ha). Organic standard law is essential to ensure the quality of organic product. Recently, Japan revised its organic standard regulations into more strict legislated law in which a penalty measure is added to punish the violators of organic labeling regulations.
Other Asian countries (China, India, Israel, Republic of Korea, Taiwan and Thailand) also implemented their own organic regulations but not yet put in legislation to be an official law. Malaysia finalized regulation, but not yet fully implemented, while Indonesia, Malaysia and other Asian countries are either in process of drafting regulations or no action is taken at all. In Taiwan, Council of Agriculture officially accredited three NGOs as the Organic Food Certification Organizations in Taiwan. Until June 2003, a total of 1092.
4 hectares of land were certified by these organizations to be organic farms to produce various organic foods (rice, vegetables, fruits, tea and others). Import of organic foods mainly from Japan and USA is increasing in Taiwan in recent years. The imported and locally produced organic foods are sold through supermarket, organic healthy food stores, and agribusiness scale chain stores and through e-commerce. Although Taiwan has its official version of organic standard promulgated in 2003, however, there is no penalty regulation for the violators of the law for organic labeling.
This will cast doubt of the consumers whether the organic foods on the market are really organically grown. Modern agriculture depends on high input of chemical fertilizer and pesticides for crop production. Although such technology based agricultural practice has increased agricultural productivity and abundance, the resulting ecological and economical impacts have not always been positive. Environmental pollution and food safety due to chemical contamination become the great concern worldwide.
In order to cope with this problem, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) proposed “The World Food Summit Plan of Action (1999)” in recognition with the importance of developing alternative sustainable agriculture such as organic farming. The goal of Action Plan is to reduce environmental degradation while creating income from the farming operation. Organic farming is an integrated farming system which involved technical aspects (soil. agronomy, weed and pest management) and economic aspects (input, output and marketing) as well as human health.
Chemical free safety foods produced from the organic farms are widely welcomed by the consumers around the world today, especially in North America, Europe, South America, Asia and Oceania. Due to the great global market demand, production of organic foods is increasing rapidly in past decades. According to Hanuman (2003) of Organic Trade Association (OTA), US retail sales of organic foods and beverages, which have grown approximately 20-24 % per year for the past 12 years, are estimated to have reached slightly US$ 11 billion during 2002, representing about 2 percent of overall US retail food sales.
The US market is expected to continue to grow, particularly after full implementation of national organic standards. According to estimation, the sale of organic products in North America and Europe will reach US$105 billion in 2006. Organic production is also becoming a booming industry in Asia and Oceania. The area of organic farm in Japan increased to 5,083 hectares which produced organic foods at a value of US$3. 5 million in 2003. In Taiwan the area of certified organic farm increased from 159. 6 hectares in 1996 to 1,092. 4 hectares in 2003. Australia has a total organic area of 10,500,000 hectares which is the largest in the world.
Other Asian countries like China, Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia, the area of organic farming is rising from year to year. There are strict organic certification laws in the Unites States, EU, Australia and Japan, and each has its own official organic law which serves the sole guideline for high quality organic production. While other Asian countries like China, India, Israel, Thailand and Taiwan although have their own official version of organic standards and rules, but not yet become the legislated laws to put penalty for the violators.
Most of other Asian countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore even do not have organic standards yet (IFOAM 2003). This paper is to look into the present situation of global organic production and marketing, including that of the Unites States and European countries. The paper is specially focusing on the recent development of organic farming in the Asian countries, including Japan, China, Hong Kong, Republic of Korea, Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam.
Taiwan experience of organic production and marketing system are reviewed in more detail with the most recent available data. The positive and negative factors affecting development of organic production and marketing in Asia such as certification system are discussed. 1. Overview of global organic farming According to SOL-Survey, Oceania has the largest share (48. 51%) of total area under organic management in 2001. The share is reduced to be 42 percent in 2004. This is due to the expansion of organic farming in Asia from 0. 33 percent in 2001 to 4 percent in 2004 which is ten fold increases in three years.
The area of the farm under organic management in Latin America shared 20 percent in 2001 and increased to be 24 percent in 2004 which is the second largest organic area after Oceania. Europe shared 23. 58 percent in 2001 and 23 percent in 2004. Europe remained to be the same rate of shares between the year of 2001 (23. 58 %) and 23 % (2004) which is the third largest continent to grow organic products in the world. North America shared 6 percent in 2004, which is the fourth largest continent to grow organic crops in the world.
It is worth noticing that the natural resource poor African continent is increasing its operation of organic farming in recent years. The total area under organic management in Africa shared a small portion of 0. 14 percent in 2001 and increased to 1 percent in 2004 (Figures 1). Ten countries with the largest land area under organic management in 2003 include Australia (10,500,000 ha), Argentina (3,192,000 ha), Italy (1,230,000 ha), USA (950,000 ha), England (679,631 ha), Uruguay (678,481 ha), Germany (632,165 ha), Spain (485. 079 ha), Canada (430,600 ha) and France (419,750 ha).
The land under organic management in the world increased drastically from 2000 to 2003. The increase of organic farm in Australia contributed greatly to the largest share of organic farm in Oceania (from 654,924 ha in 2000 to10,500, 000 ha in 2003). Uruguay becomes the world sixth largest area of 678,481 hectares in 2004 pushing Austria out the top ten countries( No 9 in 2000) (Figures 2). According to Organic Consumers’ Association (2004), the world markets for organic foods and beverages are the largest in the USA with the retail sales of US$11,000-13,000 million in 2003. The annual growth is expected to be 0. 5 percent.
Europe has a retail sale of US$10,000-11,000 million in 2003 with the expected annual growth of 10-15 percent in 2003-2005. Japan has a retail sale of US$350-450 million in 2003 with the expected annual growth of 5-10 percent. Australia has the largest share of organic farm in the world; the organic products are mainly exported to Europe, USA and Japan. It has US$75-100 million retail sale within the country with the expected annual growth of 10-20 percent in 2003-2005. Global total retail sale in 2003 was estimated to be US$23,000-25,000 (Table 1). Table 1. Overview of world markets for organic foods and beverages in 2003 Markets.
Retail sales 2003 (million US$) Annual growth 2003-2005 (%) USA 11,000-13000 0-5 Europe(Total) 10,000-11,000 10-15 Canada 650-1,000 5-10 Japan 350-450 5-10 Oceania 75-100 10-20 Total 23,000-25,000 Source: Organic Consumers’ Association (2004) Organic agriculture is established worldwide and in many countries and regulated by local governments and non-government certification organizations. The international non-government organization IFORM (International Federation of Organic Agricultural Movements) plays an important role in pushing organic agriculture in the scene of world.
IFOAM has 527 member organizations in 92 countries, including 58 in Germany, 22 in the United States, 13 in Argentina, 5 in Austria, 4 in New Zealand, 12 in Israel, 1 in China, 1 in Republic of Korea and 1 in Taiwan. Europe and Japan are the main importers of the organic products. The Japanese market for organics has been more clearly defined, following the introduction of new organic law in 2001. In the emerging economies of East Asia, the market for organic products appears to be not very significant. In most East Asian countries, there are no regulations governing the production and marketing of organic food.
Although there may be some small opportunities for organic market in these countries, the lack of regulation will lead the people to doubt about the reliability of organic products in the markets. (Source: SOL-Survey. 2001) Source: SOL-Survey 2004 Figure 1. A comparison of share of each continent of total area under organic management between 2001 and 2004 Figure 2. Ten countries with the largest land area under organic management in 2003 Source: SOL-Survey, 2003. 2. Organic Production and marketing in the United States.
Organic farming in the United States was first started by the farmers and sold as the organic products as early as in 1940. “The Organic Farming Act of 1982” was first passed by the congress to serve as the guideline for organic production. This law was later revised into more detailed and strict regulation into “The Federal Organic Food Production Act of 1990” . Under this law, National Organic Standard Board was established. The Board is responsible to take measures to assure that food products labeled as “organic foods” or “made with organic ingredients” meet the strict organic standard across the United States.
Because of these measures, organic farming becomes the fastest growing agricultural industry in the United States at an increasing rate of 20-25 % every year since 1990. The sale of organic products in 2000 was US$ 7. 8 billion, organic livestock products amounted US$618 million, and organic processed products amounted US$170. 6 million. According to Foods Merchandiser (NFM), the total amount of sale of the organic products in the Unites States increased to US$10 billion in 2003 (Organic Consumers’ Association estimated to be US$11-13 billion in 2003).
According to Nutrition Business Journal (2000), Fresh vegetables and fruits occupied the largest portion of the sale in an amount of US$2,250 million, followed by non-dairy organic drinks (US$1,000 million), organic bread and cereals (US$850), organic packaged food (US$ 650 million) and organic dairy products (US$ 500 millions) in 2000 (Figure 3). They are sold at premium price of 8-200% over non-organic ordinary products (Table 2). Table 2. Premium of organic over non-organic cereals and soybean price in the USA 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001.
Corn 35 43 73 88 98 89 59 Soybean 114 85 141 202 217 175 177 Wheat 54 59 73 8 87 103 94 Oats 35 59 73 83 77 71 41 *Numbers in the table indicate higher rate of organic over no-organic products (1995-2000) Source: Bertramsen and Dobbs, 2002. A rise in the number of organic processing facilities has increased the variety of organic products available in the market place. Almost every food category had an organic version, vegetable-protein products, cereal, meat, and juices have the largest selection among the processed organic foods.
The main food categories for organic products in the United States are vegetables fruits, cereals, meats and dairy products. Organic dairy belongs to a large-growth category in the organic industry: its sales more than doubles between 1933 and 1994 to reach an estimated at US $24 million. (Dunn 1995). 3. Organic farming in Europe Since the beginnings of the 1990s, organic farming has developed very rapidly in almost all European countries. At the beginning of 2001, in the 25 EU countries as well as Bosnia, Herzegovina, Croatia and Yugoslavia more than 3. 7 million hectares of land were managed organically by more than 130,000 farms.
This constituted almost two percent of the agricultural area. In the European Union, between 1986 and 1996 the land under organic management grew annually by 30 percent. In Central and Eastern Europe, there is a strong increase in the number of organic farms. In Austria almost ten percent of the agricultural land is organic, and in Germany 2. 6 percent. In many countries the market for organic products are still very small. In 1991 the European Union (EU) passed Regulation 2092/91, which lays down in detail how food must be produced and packaged to qualify for the description “organic”.
However, it applied only to organic foods of vegetable origin. Organic husbandly is still in the developmental stage (Wight 1997). All foods labeled “Organic” must come from processors or imported who are registered and subject to regular inspection. According to Article of EU 2092/91, organic food products may be imported from countries administering legislation equivalent to that of EU. In the Europe, Germany has the biggest market of US$1,800 million. A higher percentage of market growth (30-40 %) is seen in Denmark and Sweden (Table 3). The marketing channels differed from country to country.
In Italy, 60 percent of organic foods are sold in organic stores. Forty six percent of organics are sold in organic stores in Germany and France, while 90 percent of organics are sold in conventional stores in Denmark and 74 percent in England. Ninety six percent of organics are sold in organic stores in Netherlands. Price of organics is generally 20-100 percent higher than that of non-organics as indicated in Table 4. EU imported a considerable amount of organics from USA, Canada and Japan to meet the need of the consumers (Table 5). Table 3: The European market for organic products 1997, Estimate for 2000 Country.
US$ million % of total food sales Expected Growth (%) Expected growth (US$ million) Germany 1,800 1. 2 10 2,500 Italy 750 0. 6 20 1,100 France 720 0. 5 20-25 1,250 Belgium 620 – – – England 450 0. 4 25-30 900 Switzerland 350 2 20-30 700 Netherlands 350 1 15-20 600 Spain 320 – – – Denmark 300 2. 5 30-40 600 Finland 260 – – – Austria 225 2 15 400 Sweden 110 0. 6 30-40 400 Europe 6,255 – – 8,450 Source ???? ITC, 1999) Table 4. Price of organic foods in Europe Country Premium of organic food over conventional foods (%) Vegetables Cereals Milk Potato Fruit Sweden 30-100 10-100 15-20 30-100.
100 Denmark 20-50 0-20 20-30 20-50 50-100 Finland 94 64 31 78 – England 30-100 – 20 – – Austria – 20-30 25-30 50-100 – Switzerland 40-80 40-50 10 50 50-60 Luxemburg 60 100 10 50 60 Germany 20-100 20-150 25-80 50-100 20-150 Belgium 40 50 30 40 50 Netherlands 20-50 37 98 33 26 Italy 50-220 125-175 20-50 70-130 50-100 Source: Von Ulrich Hamm and Johannes Micholsen, “Die Vermarktung Von Oekole bensmitteln in Europa”, Oekologie Und Landbau, 2000 (Vol. 28, No. 1): pp. 31-38, Siftung Oecologic Und Landbau. Table 5. Ranking of import authorizations by country into EU (1995) Order of size.
Country No. of authorization Percent 1 United States 109 24 2 Hungary 40 9 3 Turkey 38 8 4 Canada 29 6 5 Mexico 29 6 6 India 21 5 7 Brazil 15 3 8 Dominican Republic 14 3 9 Japan 12 3 10 Bolivia 10 3 Source: USDA (1995) 4. Organic farming in Asia and Oceania According to Sol-Survey (2001), total area under organic management in Asia shared only 0. 33 % in six continents of the world in 2001; however it increased to be 4 percent in 2004, which is ten fold increases in 3 years. Oceania shared the largest portion of 48. 51 percent in 2001 and reduced to be 41. 8 percent (Figure 1).
According to IFORM (2003), land area under organic management was the largest in Australia (10,500,000 ha), followed by China (301,295 ha), New Zealand (63,438 ha), Indonesia (40,000 ha), Sri Lanka (15,215 ha), Japan (5,083 ha), Papua New Guinea (4,265 ha), Thailand (3,429 ha), Pakistan (2,009 ha), Taiwan (1,092 ha) and Republic of Korea (902 ha), Fiji (200 ha), Malaysia (131 ha). Percentage of organic area in total agricultural area in Australia is 2. 08 percent and 1. 93 percent for New Zealand. Other countries is less than 1 percent (China 0, 79 %, Papua New Guinea 0. 49%, Japan 0. 1 % and Taiwan 0. 03 %) (Table 6).
According to Organic Consumers Association (2004), Asian consumers are in line with the global trend of increased use of organic products, but American, European and Australian producers are getting profits. High start up costs, hot climatic difficulties and the shortage of reliable labeling schemes caused the Asian organic farmers struggling to grab a slice of fast growing organic market. According to IFORM (2004), last year the international market for organic food reached US$ 20 billion, with Japan eating up nearly US$ 3 billion which is the third largest market for organic foods in the world after the EU and USA.
Japanese organic farmers worried that cheap “green food” based organic imports from China might drive Japanese organic agriculture to the wall. According to Organic Trade Association (OTA) (2004) Taiwan produced and traded US$ 50 million worth of organic food, and Singapore US$3. 5million. Figures were unavailable for Hong Kong and Thailand, but the OTA has put them on its hot list of emerging organic markets where high start up costs and low yields for local farmers need to be solved. China, Papua New Guinea, India, Sri Lanka and Philippines are catching up the trend of organic farming.
Oceania which accounts for almost one half of global organic farmland had a market for organic foods that is estimated to be worth US$ 190 million. There is a total of 10,500,000 hectares of organic farmland in Australia, and 63,438 hectares in New Zealand, and most of the organic food produced is exported. 4-1. Japan Market size Japan produced a total of 34,000 tons of organic foods in 2001 which increased to be 47,000 tons in 2002. Until September 2003, a total of 4,396 farm’s household engaged in organic farming in Japan (Kijima 2004).
Japan has the biggest market for organic food in Asia. They called “Organic” as “YUKI” in Japanese. “YUKI” includes any products which are produced organically through organic farming,” natural farming” or organically processed. The amount of “YUKI products was estimated to be US$500 million in 1994 (Twyford Jones 1998). Since the mid-1980s it has subsequently grown considerably at an annual rate of 20 percent. It is estimated that more than 300 organic products, including fresh organic fruits and vegetables, are available in the market. Table 6.
Organic farming in Asia and the Pacific* Country Arable and permanent crops land (1000 ha) Number of organic farms reported Land area under organic management (ha) Percent of total agricultural area (%) Year of data DEVELOPING COUNTRIES China 135,557 2,910 301,295 0. 02 2001 Fiji 285 10 200 0. 07 2000 India 169,700 5,661 41,000 0. 03 2001 Indonesia 33,546 45,000 40,000 0. 12 2001 Korea, Rep. of 1,919 1,237 902 0. 05 1998 Lao PDR 958 150 2001 Malaysia 7,605 27 131 2001 Nepal 2,968 26 45 0. 002 Pakistan 21,960 405 2,009 0. 01 2001 Philippines 10,050 500 0. 02.
2001 Sri Lanka 1,910 3,301 15,215 0. 79 2001 Taiwan 3,601 941 1,092 0. 03 2003 Thailand 18,000 940 3,429 0. 02 2001 Viet Nam 7,350 38 2 0. 003 2001 DEVELOPED COUNTRIES Australia 50,600 1,380 10,500,000 2. 08 2001 Japan 4,830 5,083 0. 10 1999 New Zealand 3,280 983 63,438 1. 93 2001 WORLD 1,497,365 398,804 22,811,267 * Rearranged table based on data of organic farms from publication of International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) Te World of Organic Agriculture 2003, 5th, revised edition, February 2003: Minou Yussefi und Helga Willer (Eds.).
Since September 2002, organic supermarkets and restaurants have sprouted across the country, while foreign exporters of organic foods rushed to get their produce certified under the Japanese Standard Law, which came into effect in 2001. (Tim Large, REUTER. Tokyo April 5, 2002, Taipei Times). It is estimated that organic produce imported from the USA totaled US$100 million in 2002, those from Washington state was about US$10mllion (USDA 2002). Organic produce imported into Japan through Sumitomo Company and Nissho Iwai Company is mostly soybeans.
Japan also import some frozen fresh vegetables from USA, New Zealand and Canada. Organic black teas are from Latin America, and organic banana are imported from Mexico and Philippines (Trends in Japan 1996). A part from consumer co-operatives, supermarket chain has been increasing their sales of organic products. The Tokyo-based Citizen’s Association for Recycling Movement in Japan opened the organic stores which attract 1,200 customers a day. Its operation is based on door to door delivery service for estimated 55,000 households across the country (Japan Times 1997).
Retail price for organic products are estimated to be, on average 15-20 percent higher than the similar non-organic products. Competition is increasing between the locally produced products and imported organic products, especially cheap “green food” based organic products from China. Europe and the United States are exporting much cheaper and better quality organic farm products to Japan. Some observers believe that organic import will continue to increase in view of the increasing market demand (Japan Times 1997). Organic law in Japan.
Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery (MAFF) launched a program of organic farming for many years. In 1992 MAFF promulgated a regulation called “Standard of Labeling Organic Products and Specially Produced Agricultural Products”. However, the regulation was not welcomed by the consumers, because it did not provide a reliable labeling system and caused a lot of confusion to the consumers. It was then revised into “Regulation for Labeling Standardized Agricultural and Forestry Commodity”. This regulation was further revised two times in 1996 and 1997 to be more suitable one.
It was further revised into four kinds of more strict regulations, and officially promulgated as the latest version of organic law in 2000. They are: (1) Agriculture and Forestry Regulation for Organic Products; (2) Accreditation Standard for Agricultural Production (3) Japanese Standard of Processing Organic Products and (4) Basic Standard for Accreditation of Organic Food Processors. The fourth one was again revised to be “Standard for Organic Products and Specially Produced Agricultural Products”, and was officially promulgated in 2001.
The latest version of organic law is very strict, and the certification organization and inspector must have the official license obtained according to the procedures stipulated in the law. Only officially certified products can be labeled as “JAS Organic” for marketing. There is also a regulation about the labeling of imported organic foods. The law has a penalty regulation for faked organic foods. The producer of faked organic food bearing “JAS Organic” label will be fined with a minimum sum of 500,000 Japanese Yen.
Much higher amount (double amount) of fine will be posted to the certification organization which issued a faked certification to a faked organic product. Because of this strict law comparable to that of USA and EU, organic consumers gained confidence on organic foods in Japanese market. This confidence feeling led to increased organic consumption in Japan, at the present market volume of US$3-4 billion. It is estimated that approximately 3 to 5 million people in Japan buy organic products regularly for health reasons.
Production and marketing of organic products by big companies The case of MOA International The “natural farming” promoter MOA (Mokichi Okada Association International) which has 68 years’ of history established a 60-ha experimental farm at Ohito, Sizuoka Prefecture. The technology of natural farming and “Natural Farming Standard” developed at the experimental farm are transferred to the contracted farmers for application. The contracted “natural farms” serve as “Satellite Farms” to produce natural foods for MOA.
The natural products (organic products) produced from the satellite farms are routinely colleted at MOA Narita Commodity Collection and Distribution Center located near Tokyo. The collected natural products are packed along with the “MOA natural food label”. Some of them are used as the row materials for processing into various types of natural foods, such as natural rice, natural tea, natural Tofu, natural soy source, natural noodle and natural soybean milk etc. The natural foods thus produced are then distributed to the MOA’s health chain stores scattered across the country. The market chain store network of MOA facilitates the exportation and importation of organic foods in Japan.
The case of Mizuho Sinsei Organic Agricultural Institute This Institute is a part of the private Mizuho Food and Grain Company operating in very similar way as MOA to produce and marketing organic foods. This Institute is doing extension work for organic farming through its education program to its 2,000 members of organic farmers. The organic products (rice, vegetables, fruits and tea) produced by these member farmers are collected, labeled and sold as organic foods through the marketing section of Mizuho Company.
The organic products are delivered to the consumers through its 100 chain stores. In the mean time, they distributed the organic foods directly to the special fixed consumers by 140 cars every day. The case of “TEIKEI”system of the producer-consumer co-partnership of organic foods TEKEI system is the producer-consumer co-partnership movement launched by Japan Organic Association. TEkEI is an idea to create an alternative distribution system not to depend on the conventional market. It is basically a direct distribution system of organic products from the farm.
To carry it out, the producers and the consumers should contact each other frequently to get mutual understanding and mutual trust to each other in terms of product quality. Under this system the delivery stations are set up to deliver the products for the nearest consumers. The Japanese organic agriculture movement initiated this TEKEI system to take care of both producers and consumers. Through TEKEI system, friendly and creative relationship between reliable organic producers and consumers is established. Organic foods are produced according to pre-arranged plans between the producers and consumers.
Price of organic products is set in the spirit of mutual benefits. According to Japan Organic Agriculture Association, at present 500-1,000 consumers’ groups are connected with “TEIKEI” system of operation across the country. 4-2. China Green Food In China organic food is known as “Green Food”. Green Food is defined as uncontaminated, safe, high quality healthy food which is produced under a specific scheme of ecological agriculture. It is permitted to be sold under the label of “Green Food” after being certified by designated organizations (Liu 1999).
In China, the greenhouse vegetables that are grown under the soil less condition is also called Green Foods, because they are not exposed to any polluting substance (USDA 1997). According to the China Green Food Development Center, Green Food is similar to organic, natural or ecological food in Western countries (APFI 1997). In 1990, China created the Green Food Development Center (CGFDC) under Ministry of Agriculture. In 1992 it was renamed to be China Green Food Development Center (CGFDC), which was accepted as a member of IFOAM in 1993.
Recently, a regulation entitled “Green Food Grading Standard” has been promulgated by the CGFDC. This regulation divides green food into “A” and “AA” grades. “AA” grade green food is defined as the products which are produced according to international standard. It is targeted for international markets such as United Sates, Europe and Japan, while “A” grade green food, which allows using low level of chemicals, is aimed at selling in the domestic market (Tang 1997). In 1994, the State Environmental Protection Administration of China (SEPA) established the Organic Food Development Center (OFDC).
OFDC then prepared a comprehensive set of “Organic Farming Production and Food Processing Standards and Management Regulations” for labeling of the organic foods. The standards cover crops, eggs and milk products, apiculture, mushrooms sprout products and wild plants collection; processing of organic products; distribution and sale; storage and packaging; inspection and auditing; air, irrigation and water quality used in production; and permissible and prohibited material for production and processing. OFDC is now responsible for inspection, certification, labeling, research, education and training related to development of organic food.
(FAO 2002) Certified products include soybean, buckwheat, sesame, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, rice, walnut, pine nuts tea, medical herbs, milk and a few processed products such fruit juices, noodles (FAO 2002). Before 1999, more than 95% of the certified organic products of China were exported, mainly to Japan, EU and USA (FAO 2002) Production of green foods Green food production which began in China in 1990 has developed rapidly since that time. By the end of 1995 a total of 568 kinds of green foods were developed. The first group of green foods is categorized to be the fresh products without any industrial processing.
They are fresh fruits, vegetables, rice, poultry, meat, eggs, fish and tea. The second group belongs to the processed products from non-polluted raw materials, such as milk power, milk products, and grape wines. In 1995 the amount of green foods produced in China reached 2. 10 million tons, with an output value of RMB 10 million (China Daily 1997). By the end of 1996, a total of 742 kinds of green foods with the total output of 3. 6 million tons at the value of US$ 1. 77 billion were produced. It was 30 percent increase in comparison with that of 1995 (PSPFI 1997).
At the end of 1997, China developed 892 green food products with a total output of 6. 3 million tons (Liu 1999). It is estimated that a total of 135,557 hectares of lands are under organic management in 2002 which is 0. 02 percent of total agricultural area (Table 6). The government is targeting to increase the area of green food production to 1 percent of the cultivated area in the future. According to the China Green Food Development Center, China is planning to build 19 additional green food production bases in 10 major cities including Shanghai, Guanzhjou and Shenntang in the future.
About half of the 40 most popular green foods are produced outside Shanghai. Many of them are delivered from Heilongjang province in China far north-east, which is considered to be unpolluted region. In 2002 the writer (Hsieh) visited Shanghai Suqiao Modern Agricultural Development Area located in Puding New Area. The area is used for experiments in horticulture and aquaculture as well as mass production of vegetables and flowers, fruits and melons.
It is seen as an example of the Yangtze River Valley to develop green food. After seeing the farm, the writer felt that the way of producing green food in that area is quite different from the scheme of organic production used by the Western countries. Markets Chinese consumers began to have initial awareness of green foods that may lead to demand in the future, particularly polluted cities. In these cities, concern about healthy foods is growing and profit for producing green foods is increasing (USDA 1997).