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NZ businesses told to respond to growth in popularity of organic products

Author
Alicia Burrow,
Section
Business,
Publish Date
Thursday, 7 April 2016, 5:51p.m.
(Stock Xchng)
(Stock Xchng)

UPDATED: 6.48PM New Zealand businesses are being told they need to realise and respond to the growing popularity of organic products.

An organic milk producer said Kiwi dairy farmers need to adapt to a niche market if they're going to survive the competition of larger countries also producing milk.

In the first half of last year nearly all the growth in the milk market here and overseas came from organic milk sales.

That's according to a market report compiled by The Agri Business Group and Colmar Brunton for Organics Aotearoa New Zealand.

Lewis Road Creamery founder Peter Cullinane said the figures align with his company's entry into the market, and the demand remains high.

He said New Zealand's positioned well with its clean green image, and now's the time for dairy farmers to capitalise.

Cullinane said New Zealand can no longer compete in the world market because we can't produce milk in the volumes larger countries are beginning to generate.

"Where we can win is in quality, that's where the opportunity is. So I think it is absolutely in New Zealand's best interests to focus as far as humanely possible to focus on quality over quantity".

The meat industry's costing New Zealand money by not jumping on the organic bandwagon - the sector's grown across the board by 11 per cent each year since 2012.

That's according to a market report compiled by The Agri Business Group and Colmar Brunton for Organics Aotearoa New Zealand.

OANZ Chief Executive Brendan Hoare said other exports like horticulture are doing well, with steady gains in organic New Zealand wines.

But he said the land area under organic livestock production has declined by 55 per cent since 2012.

He said they're in communication with industry leaders to realise the growth potentials.

Hoare said the domestic market for certified organics has reached 217 million.

"Organics and sustainability are mainstream and it would be loss for people not to take action. People need to put aside their ideologies and they need to embrace what's going on globally and who's driving it is Generation Y, and they're increasingly moving into areas of responsibility".

Hoare said exports have also increased dramatically.

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