Monday 13th October 2014
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New Zealand's organic wine exports have been given a boost with the European Commission agreeing to recognise the local industry's production methods as equivalent to its own.
The result comes after two years of collaboration between the Ministry of Primary Industries and New Zealand Winegrowers to ensure access to the important European market.
The equivalence status gives greater certainty of access and means less red tape for New Zealand wine exports to Europe, with the total value of organic wine exported from New Zealand currently running at around $44 million.
"In the past, in order for a certified organic and bio-dynamic producer to service an international market, there were a lot of extra time and compliance costs that took away quite a lot of margin, so in some instances it was better to go to market removing any mention of organic certification," said James Milton of Millton Vineyards and Organic Winegrowers NZ.
Last year almost 2,000 hectares or 5.6 percent of the 35,700 hectare producing area were under organic certification and the goal is to increase that to 20 percent by 2020.
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