UK: Organic industry gets EU funding for promotional campaign
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Sustain has announced that the EU has approved funding for the UK’s first generic promotional campaign to increase awareness of the benefits of organic food and farming, giving a boost of 2 million £ to the organic industry in the UK over the next three years. The campaign will kick off later in 2010 for three years and will aim to give consumers a better understanding of the benefits of organic food and farming. The objective of the programme is to reverse the decline in the sales of organic foods and farming through a high profile media campaign to reignite consumer interest. The campaign will stress the many benefits of organic food and farming and comprise press advertising, a digital campaign and PR.
More than 75 organisations have pledged money to the campaign including leading retailers Sainsbury’s, Tesco, and Waitrose, as well as big name organic brands such as Green & Black’s, Organix, Rachel’s and Yeo Valley. Catherine Fookes from Sustain, who co-ordinated the EU bid, commented, “As the proposing body, we are extremely pleased that several years of hard work have paid off. It’s a great achievement which would not have been possible without the support of all our industry pledgors, the Soil Association and the Organic Trade Board. We are delighted that we will have substantial funds to promote the benefits of organic food and farming over the next three years. We would still welcome contributions from companies who have not pledged yet so we can amplify the campaign.”
Huw Bowles, Chairman of the Organic Trade Board comments, “We’ve worked on this bid for several years and it’s a fantastic boost to our industry. It will give us a great chance for growth in all organic sectors so sales start to increase again.” Matt Peach, Tesco organic brand manager, comments, “As a pledgor, we are really pleased that funding has been secured for this generic campaign. It’s great news for the industry and will allow retailers to help promote the many benefits of organic food, making it easier for people to understand what organic means at the point of purchase. Currently Tesco helps millions of people buy organic every week and we are committed to continuing to provide the best value, quality and range of organic food for these customers.”
Sustain, the alliance for better food and farming, is the proposing organisation for the EU bid. Sustain advocates food and agriculture policies and practices that enhance the health and welfare of people and animals, improve the working and living environment, enrich society and culture and promote equity. Sustain represents around 100 national public interest organisations including all the main UK organic organisations, working at international, national, regional and local level. The EU bid for match funding is entitled: Organic UK – A promotional and information campaign to increase awareness of the benefits of organic food and farming and to encourage increased frequency of purchase of organic produce in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland 2010-2013.
Key co-ordinating team: Sustain, Soil Association, Organic Trade Board
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