India is set to include livestock, aquaculture, and textiles within its organic production process through the National Project on Organic Production (NPOP), the country’s national accreditation body for organic products. Growing domestic and foreign demand for organic products have driven a number of certification agencies to register for NPOP.

India plans to bring in changes to the National Project on Organic Production (NPOP) in line with standards set by the United Nations body on organic products.

It will also include livestock, aquaculture and textiles as part of organic production process, according to Dr P.V.S.M. Gouri, advisor of NPOP.

The NPOP is recognised as the national accreditation body for organic products in the country and is under the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Exports Development Authority (Apeda).

“The draft for amendments in line with the UN body International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) is ready. It will be notified soon,” she told a session at a seminar “Incredible India” at BioFach 2012 on Thursday.

Inspection Group

According to IFOAM, the number of farmers in an inspection group has to be not more than 500. In India, currently 2,500 farmers can be roped in an inspection group.

“Having less number of farmers in a group helps in better inspection,” Dr Gouri said.

This will help better sampling of organic products grown by farmers and reduce risks of contamination.

Uniform implementation standards

The NPOP will have uniform implementation standards, while a module for approval of inputs by certification agencies is also on cards.

All stakeholders in organic production will now begin using the Web-based Tracenet system for certification of organic products based on data available on Tracenet that include all details of farmers, cultivation practices, crop inputs and management and production.

“From this year, organic certification for products will be issued through Tracenet and all stakeholders have begun to use the system from last year,” she said.

Sampling and testing of products have been made compulsory before exports now through the traceability that is available in Tracenet, she said.


Mr Asit Tripathy, Chairman of APEDA, said so far 22 certification agencies, mostly foreign, have registered for NPOP. “Two more agencies will soon be added to the list,” she said.

Mr Gerald A. Hermann, President of Organic Services GmbH,Germany, said with a growing domestic market for organic products, India would soon find it to tough to supply to export markets.

However, it will have an important role to play in the global market given the fact that the country has thousands of varieties of seeds and cultivars besides traditional knowledge.

Mr Gunnar Rundgren of Grolink, Sweden, regretted that the Indian Government was the biggest fertiliser subsidy provider in the world. He hoped that the regulatory system in the country would have the ability to listen and innovate.

Ms Vandana Shiva, founder of the Navadanya Trust, said that India should use trade in organic products to protect its biodiversity.

(The trip for BioFach 2012 has been sponsored by Nuremberg Messe GmbH in collaboration with Apeda).