Green Croft farmer Jennifer Welse holds out a clump of organic kale at the Farmer’s and Crafter’s Market Saturday. Provincial regulations say that for farmers to lable wares as organic, certification is required. - Carli Berry/Capital News

Kelowna farmers and customers pleased with new B.C. organic regulations

Both see the new regulations, which require market farmers to be certified, as a good thing

The Kelowna Farmer’s and Crafter’s Market is well ahead of the game when it comes to regulating organic goods.

Since its inception, the market has made it a requirement for those who wish to sell organic food to also carry certification, according to the market’s president Bev Wiens.

“You have to display your certification. This market has been running for 24 years and the Vernon market and other markets have been pretty much the same thing,” she said.

Wiens said markets in the Kelowna and Vernon areas have always been this way.

“As of today they all have to be the same,” she said.

The province rolled out its regulations Saturday, ensuring all farmer’s markets wares meet the same organic standard as grocery stores. Prior to the rollout, there was no regulation to determine what organic wares at the market level was actually organic.

RELATED: Agriculture ministry invests $8 million to bolster organic sector

Naomi Both, with Firefly Farm, which is classified as organic, said the change is fantastic.

“I feel like it’s a good thing the government has caught up with the farmer’s market,” she said. “I think it makes it easier, there’s less doubt and people aren’t questioning it as much.”

“We always had a certificate at our booth and people are welcome to ask questions,” she said.

Farmer Jennifer Wesle, with Green Croft Farm, said she agrees with the regulations.

“Without having the regulation, anyone can say anything,” she said.

Junior sous chef Alex Seeback picked up a large order of organic vegetables Saturday as ingredients for Mission Hill.

As a consumer, he called it a “very good idea” for everyone to get on board.

“As somebody who has worked in a restaurant, I know that there’s a lot of places that will just slap on organic as a label, and you can buy things at the same price,” he said.

He used an example of a mushroom farm in Ontario that sold mushrooms as organic but weren’t.

“I think it’s great though, for it to be possible for people to understand like they know for sure that this is an actual thing,” he said.

At Mission Hill, he said the chefs are in the process of transitioning to organic ingredients.

“For us now to fully transition, I think organic is a big thing and it’s great for the environment and for us,” he said. “It makes a lot easier for us to find a quality product that way.”

RELATED: Meet Your Farmer: Organic farming as a way of life

The new regulations mean all products marketed as organic in B.C. must be certified organic. Until now, products sold in grocery stores or outside the province had to be certified to carry the organic label; the new regulations extend that to farmers’ markets, farm gate sales, retail stores as of 2018,” according to a Certified Organic Associations of BC news release.

@carliberry_
carli.berry@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Homeowners keep fire at bay in Oyama garage

Fire crews are reportedly on scene of a structure fire on Broadwater Road

Comedians to share laughs to help Kelowna school

Fundraiser begins effort to replace $20,000 stolen from South Rutland Elementary PAC

Rockets’ Erik Gardiner retires from hockey

Gardiner steps away from hockey for health and personal reasons.

Peachland’s doctors moving out of the district

All the doctors at Beach Avenue Medical Centre are leaving

Reaction from Costco shoppers on potential move to West Kelowna

Rumors have been heard that the Kelowna store may move to West Kelowna

B.C. chief says they didn’t give up rights for gas pipeline to be built

Hereditary chief: no elected band council or Crown authority has jurisdiction over Wet’suwet’en land

Thieves steal thousands from 140 Coast Capital Savings members

Online fraud tactics included phising and ‘brute force’ in November and December

Condo rental bans may be on way out with B.C. empty home tax

Many exemptions to tax, but annual declarations required

UPDATE: B.C. boy, aunt missing for three days

The pair are missing from Kamloops

Daredevil changes game plan to jump broken White Rock pier

Brooke Colby tells council daredevil event would help boost waterfront business

Liberal bows out of byelection after singling out Jagmeet Singh’s race

Karen Wang says she made comments online that referenced Singh’s cultural background

Truck hauling compressed gas for ‘virtual pipeline’ crashes on B.C. highway

Driver charged and highway closed for nine hours - containers did not rupture

Most Read