Organics for producers.
There is an organic support scheme in the Isle of Man. When this page was updated, information from the Dept of the Environment, Food and Agriculture confirmed that the conversion scheme is still extant; there is no budget in it in this financial year; monies may be found to support new conversion if there is a sound business case with a clear route to market for the produce. The scheme is not on the government website currently.
Following the work of the Organic Working Party, the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (*DAFF as it was called then) put out a consultation for improvements to the scheme in line with other countries within the UK. The proposals for change and the 2004 Scheme are shown in the following link:
Organic Farming Scheme 04 & Consult 09
The amendments were then put to Tynwald, accepted and implemented as shown in the following link:
Organic Farming Scheme 04 & Changes 09
Organic Certifying Bodies
Two of the most important of these independent certifying bodies, ones which certify at least one producer on the Island, are:
Organic Farmer and Growers UK 2 www.organicfarmers.org.uk
Soil Association UK 5 www.soilassociation.org
On the Organic Farmers and Growers site, there are very useful sections About Organics, and Links.
The Soil Association site is more complex because it is both a charity, (probably the main spokesperson/organisation for organic in the UK) and a certification body.
For the charity part, there are sections on Facing the future, Good food for all, Enabling change and What is organic.
For the certification part, on the Home page, top right, there are key sections for producers in Farmers and growers and Certification.
Organics for Grow Your Own
For many years, the principal body in support of growing your own using organic principles has been H.D.R.A., the Henry Doubleday Research Association.This has recently changed its name and is now called Garden Organic.The website is www.gardenorganic.org.uk and is full of very useful information.You may choose to join to benefit from the Member’s Section, receive their quarterly magazine and also get 10% off your purchases from the Organic Gardening Catalogue – see below in Sources of Organic Seeds.
Sources of Organic Seeds for producers and home growers
Many of the major seed catalogues have some organic seeds in their range. However, some of the ones with a greater range of organic seeds are as follows. Some are principally for grow your own, others supply professional growers and grow your own alike.
The Organic Gardening Catalogue. www.organiccatalog.com/catalog has links with Garden Organic, the new name for what was formerly H.D.R.A., the Henry Doubleday Research Association)
Tamar Organics www.tamarorganics.co.uk
The Real Seed Company www.vidaverde.co.uk.They are not certified organic.They say they are too small to afford certification.It is up to you to read about what they do, and then decide whether or not to buy their seeds.The packs are smaller and less expensive than many other companies.
Suffolk Herbs www.suffolkherbs.com.Not just herbs.Suffolk Herbs claims to be the most comprehensive stockist of organic seed varieties in Europe!
Moles Seeds. www.molesseeds.co.uk/homepage.htm. They have a limited range of organic seeds, but that is growing annually.The quantities in any packet may be too much for the Grow Your Own gardener, but you can always get a pack and share it among friends.
For small quantities of single varieties, www.moreveg.co.uk has a wide range of organic and non-
organic and non-