In line with the effective implementation of the amended Organic Agriculture Law and its Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR), the Department of Trade and Industry – Philippine Accreditation Bureau (DTI-PAB) and the Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards (DA-BAFS) signed the updated Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the objective of further strengthening the collaboration of the two agencies in the implementation of Organic Certification Body (OCB) accreditation.

The MOU was signed by DTI-PAB Director James Empeño and DA-BAFS Director Vivencio Mamaril on 30 June 2022. The MOU summarizes the roles and commitments of both parties and is intended to terminate and replace the former MOU which took effect on 01 October 2015.

The agreements in the MOU state that the DTI-PAB and DA-BAFS will jointly conduct an assessment that includes office and witness audits, and evaluation reviews of the third-party OCB during initial application, renewal and surveillance. Both parties will also provide technical assistance in carrying out capacity building activities to support the implementation of the amended Organic Agriculture Law.

As the national accreditation body, DTI-PAB is mandated to accredit inspection, testing and certifying bodies, and other bodies offering conformity assessment services while DA-BAFS is recognized as the competent authority for organic culture.

For the past few years, DTI-PAB and DA-BAFS have partnered to harmonize the accreditation process for OCBs. With the passage of the Republic Act 11511 An Act Amending Republic Act No. 10068 or the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010, both parties deemed it necessary to continue and solidify the collaboration by updating the existing MOU. The new MOU not only include updates that are relevant to the amendment of the Organic Agriculture Act, but also includes provisions towards a more sustainable partnership.

DTI-PAB continues to collaborate with other regulatory agencies to promote accreditation and to create a more harmonized accredited conformity assessments among regulators in the Philippines.

Release Date: 12 July 2022.