New control system for organic inspection bodies in 2009

The government has agreed that the Advisory Committee on Organic Standards can continue to play a high profile role in delivery of advice on the organic sector, but with a new control system.

The government has agreed that the Advisory Committee on Organic Standards can continue to play a high profile role in delivery of advice on the organic sector, but with a new control system.

It follows the recommendations of an independent review of the Advisory Committee on Organic Standards (ACOS).

The review, which was announced in August last year and undertaken by Drew Associates, looked at the future development and governance of ACOS, the quality and impact of its advice and its working methods as well as its resources and how they are managed.

The main recommendations are that ACOS continues to be used for securing authoritative advice from the organic sector, but more reliance should be placed on the UK Accreditation Service (UKAS) in respect of controlling the organic inspection bodies.

Jeff Rooker, minister for Sustainable Farming, Food and Animal Welfare said: "The recommendations made will ensure ACOS continues to play a highly effective role in the delivery of advice on the organic sector while achieving greater clarity and efficiency in the control of the organic inspection bodies."

The recommendations will now be taken forward with a view to the new control system for the organic inspection bodies coming into place in early 2009.

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