There are more and more adherents of a healthy diet, but do they eat safe food? Bioproduct, 100 percent natural, environmentally friendly - these words are becoming more popular.
Food manufacturers around the world are actively using them in slogans that are full of packaging, luring customers. According to experts, in Kazakhstan, the use of these terms is most often the method of public relations production. This organic product must have a special certificate. Today in the country there are 61 producers who grow organic products on an area of only 280 thousand hectares. These are farms of Akmola, Karaganda, Kostanay and North Kazakhstan regions that are export-oriented. They send abroad more than 20 types of products, including wheat, flax, lentils, peas, barley, canola, flour, vegetable oil.
For example, only in the Kostanay region there are 20 such enterprises, among which - 2 creameries.
They received European certificates for finished products and produce them from raw materials grown in their fields without the use of pesticides.
People far from agriculture believe that environmentally friendly products are produced in our country. But this is only partly true: no one analyzed, for example, loaves of bread for the presence of residues of pesticides and herbicides that were used to treat the fields. Many farmers use high-quality branded chemicals, but there are those who, wanting to reduce their costs when obtaining a crop, use heavy Chinese mixtures. It has already been proven that they can accumulate in the soil, in the same wheat or other crops. This means that, without knowing it, we unknowingly poison ourselves.
According to oncologists, the number of patients grows annually in Kazakhstan, they do not exclude the effect of residual chemicals that enter the body through food.
In developed countries, this relationship has already been traced for a long time and began to actively abandon chemistry in the fields and produce organic products. There are progress in Kazakhstan, but this is only a small part. Most farms that grow organic produce are export-oriented. What prevents them from feeding the Kazakhstanis? As it turned out, there are many reasons for this.
For a certificate abroad
About the need to grow organic products in Kazakhstan, talked about in 2013-2014. They argued for a long time, made proposals, drafted the Law on Organic Farming, and in 2016 it began to operate. But instead of the domestic market, products were exported only. One of the reasons is that the country did not have a laboratory that could carry out all the necessary research and issue a certificate, and foreign companies were not in a hurry to enter the country because of the small volumes. therefore farms that decided to switch to organic farming had to contact foreign laboratories. One of such farms is Uspenovka LLP.
“In 2015, we received an international certificate and are engaged in the production of organic products,” said the director farm "Uspenovka" Anatoly SERGEEV. - All studies of product samples are conducted in Germany. And only after receiving the test results, our products are recognized as organic. This is only the first stage. When we ship products to Europe, it is checked again, and if the quality results are not confirmed, we must return it back or sell it at the usual price. This is a very complex and lengthy process. Certification costs 20 thousand euros, one analysis costs 700 euros, plus sample delivery to Germany. Large transportation costs. And, therefore, the price of organic products will be much higher.
Why do Europeans buy our products? This is because people began to take care of their health. They no longer want to poison themselves, since everything that could be poisoned, they already poisoned themselves. Now they send all the poisons to us, and we are glad that our productivity is increasing, the number of weeds is decreasing. But getting less health. We need to stay healthy with clean foods. This business needs to be dealt with here in your homeland.
What slows down the process?
According to Anatoly Sergeyev, he would gladly sell his products on the domestic market. But there are a few buts ...
“We talk a lot about organic products in narrow circles, but we need to start with informing the population,” the agrarian believes. - The people do not know what pure products are. They can be called organic or bioproducts. Citizens have a stereotype: if a product is organic, they believe that it is grown by using organic residues, including manure. But this is not true. Organic farming is not only a refusal to use chemicals in the fields, but also obtaining a certificate, as well as constant monitoring by the company that issued it.
- In Kazakhstan, a law has been adopted, there are standards for eco-products, and in 2019 the Road Map of Organic Agriculture was signed. It would seem that there is everything, but nothing works, - said president of the "Organic Farming Association" Vadim LOPUKHIN. - In the country there are enterprises that grow organic products, but mainly they are exported. There are several enterprises involved in the processing of environmental raw materials and the production of finished products. The number of such industries must be increased and support provided by the state. A few years ago, the national mark of organic food was approved, but today this label is not on our products. The law was adopted 4 years ago, but it will not start acting as it should.
According to Lopukhin, the development of domestic organic farming is hindered by 2 factors - lack of knowledge of farmers and consumers and the practically absent market of organic products in the country. These two tasks need to be addressed.
The process of attracting farmers to fill the domestic market with organic products should have gotten off the ground more than 2 years ago. When JSC "National Center for Expertise" received accreditation to conduct research and issue certificates for organic products. But things are still there: during this time they have not issued a single national certificate.
“Our center can issue certificates for organic products, but farmers are not interested in obtaining a Kazakhstan certificate, as they are more interested in export,” said Dinara URAZBEKOVA, specialist of the Kostanay branch of the National Center for Expertise, a member of the republican commission for certification of organic products. - Farmers from the southern regions have approached us, but they produce a small volume of products, and for them obtaining a certificate is unprofitable.
But still, a wide circle of farmers does not know that such a center has been operating in the country for so long.
“Even I, a person who has been doing organic work for 5 years, have not heard anything about the laboratory,” explained Anatoly Sergeyev. - Although I would be happy to receive a national certificate. Since besides the fields I have a mill and I could supply organic flour. There is a bakery where we could bake organic bread and other baked goods. Its cost will be 50-60 percent more expensive than usual.
Kostanai farmers sent their proposals to the Ministry of Agriculture and the agricultural group in parliament on how to help domestic organic products get to the shelves of Kazakhstani stores. Among the proposals - the need to create a clear mechanism for the development of organic farming. Why do farms with international certificates do not know how to get a domestic certificate? It was also proposed to consolidate the personal responsibility of one of the vice ministers for the development of the production of organic products.
It is clear that the future belongs to environmentally friendly products, but when it comes for Kazakhstanis is still a big question.
Author: Tatiana Derevyanko