The Chinese middle class are turning to certified organic food, imported largely from Australia to avoid produce affected by contamination scandals and environmental issues.
Products such as organic meat, milk, dried fruits, nuts, wheat flour and coffee are sought after, according to Joanne Barber commercial and marketing executive for Australian Organic.
Currently around 400,000 Chinese families have made the switch to organic food and with a population of 1.3 billion people, demand for organic fare is set to grow even further. According to Australian Organic, organic food production in China is worth over US$2.5 billion.
Australian Organic recently signed an agreement with its Chinese equivalent, Organic Food Development and Certification Centre of China (OFDC) with the aim of making Australian export smoother, particularly for the beef and wine industries.
Allowing Chinese-trained Australian inspectors to audit businesses on behalf of China will help to facilitate this goal.
Both parties will benefit from easier and better exportation systems. China will receive top-of-the-line products that will keep customers happy and Australia can continue to expand their organic industry.
IBISWorld recently released a report that states, organic farming was one of the best performing agricultural industries in the country over the last five years. This sector is forecast to grow by 50 per cent over the next five years, and exports to Asia will be a big contribution to this.
Organic farmers are already voicing their support of the agreement. Alister Ferguson, chief executive of Arcadian Organic and Natural Meat, stated the agreement will reduce the red tape and simplify the exportation process, allowing farmers like him to expand their market.
According to Australian Organic, OFDC is also working with Austrade and NSW Government Trade and Investment in Shanghai to further expand business for Australia’s certified organic companies.