Why do we care about group certification?

We at Organic Services share the vision that, if managed and monitored conscientiously and efficiently, the organic sector cannot only supply healthy, nutritious food for everyone, but enable all supply chain parties to make an honest living on which they can build a sustainable future.

We have been working in the organic sector for more than 30 years. The needs and interests of smallholders have always been of particular importance to us. We've made it our personal mission to help strengthening their resilience, voice and livelihood and are convinced that group certification for standards like organic, fair trade and sustainable greatly facilitates their marketing chances. Instead of each small farmstead applying for costly and complex individual certification, group certification allows smallholders to join forces and obtain one certificate for an entire group.

Supporting this concept, we offer Group Integrity as an affordable, web-based tool for the professional management of internal control systems (ICS) of grower groups. As a business consultancy, we do not make a profit with Group Integrity. Instead, we follow the example of other social businesses by reinvesting the revenue into improving the tool and into subsidising our social mission: supporting small-scale farmers, the weakest links of the food supply chain.

“In order to feed 9 billion people by 2050, sustainable agricultural growth is needed, supporting an agricultural sector which produces enough food, which is inclusive and resilient, and which makes optimal use of innovation and digital solutions. Smallholder and family farmers must play a key role in achieving this."

(Bakker et al., 2018, Can access to data really transform agriculture for smallholders? ICT Update, Issue 89, page 2)

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