Many of us think the ‘certified organic food’ we cough up good money for buy has been tested for pesticides. But the ‘organic certifier’ here is the Sarawak Agricultural Department and I dare say bet they some most spend most of their time shuffling papers and auditing the files of those pitiful few farmers for records indicating that forbidden chemicals weren’t used instead of making sudden unannounced spot checks on the farm and sampling of the produce. But I get extremely frustrated when I see farms whose “organic” vegetable fields look the same are as green and pest free as the conventional fields. Honest Conscientious farmers go through a lot of trouble to be organic and they worry about competing with cheaters who just want the price premiums that an organic label can command. Again the Sarawak Agriculture Department should make very routine surprise pesticide tests to catch these arseholes cheaters.
What a lot of us are unaware of is just how the organic system currently works. Organic farmers must prove they are not using synthetic fertilizer by documenting that they are using composted manure applications and weed their vegetable beds by hand. The inspector’s job, besides having a quick look around the farm, is focused predominantly on examining these records which, for all one knows, is completely fabricated. So can we trust an organic label in Sarawak?