Our Work

SAOSO takes responsibility for food sovereignty and sustainable development through organic production practices.

Organic agriculture has been proven to be more efficient in times of climate change and drought, and far better suited to the large majority farmers who choose to farm in an ecologically-sound manner.

Our strategy and work is focused on:

Harnessing opportunities for the organic sector

Research that furthers the adoption of organic agriculture

Access to market through PGS and organic certification

Collaborating and networking nationally, regionally and internationally

Uniting and promoting the organic agriculture sector


The emergent organic sector is defining our food heritage and best-practice land use. Support of local farmers assists South Africa’s economy to transform through a vibrant agricultural sector that will lead to social reform that will benefit all.

SAOSO’s mandate is to develop the organic sector from training programmes through to value chain activities.

Our Projects


PGS SA Pollinators

Harmonisation of Standards

Our Priorities

  • To create awareness amongst producers, consumers, retailers and markets of the opportunities for local certification through the SAOSO standard and trademarked logos;
  • To make training in organic farming more readily available by partnering with Centres of Excellence in as many provinces as can be activated.
  • To populate and build content of the Knowledge Hub page that will make organic farming easier.
  • To identify opportunities that can be shared with those in the organic sector.
  • To work closely with the Department of Agriculture, Rural Development and Land Reform and the office of the Registrar: Act 36 to simplify the process of registering organic inputs thus making them more accessible to farmers.
  • To engage with stakeholders in the agroecology network for a programme of support from Government that is suitable for producers who choose not to farm conventionally.
  • To establish a trade desk that will service the needs of organic producers.


  • Facilitating access to the Carbon Credit Market
  • Information on Impact ESG
  • Next Farmer Platform
  • YeboFarmer

Our Partners


Our most important partners in our quest to change the way our food is produced and to advocate for recognition of the many advantages of ecological organic agriculture, are our members. We are here to represent you in the development in the organic value chain from farm to fork. We need to hear from you. Click on the button below to sign up or let us know how we can better represent you

Your organisation

Second on the list are those organisations who resonate with principles encompassed by The Rights of Mother Earth, The Earth Charter, Rights of Indigenous People and Section 24 of our Constitution. If you understand how the principles of organic agriculture – health, ecology, fairness and care – can lead to a more prosperous society where nutritious food is available for all, then we would like to partner with you.


SAOSO has partnered with PGS SA to develop a grassroots movement of organic farmers nationally. Growing food sovereignty through partnerships and programs provincially. Aligning farmers to Ecological Organic Agriculture and PGS nationally, producing to the SAOSO standard.


SAOSO is a member of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) which is the worldwide umbrella organisation for the organic agriculture movement. IFOAM assisted with the development of the SAOSO standard.

Control Union

SAOSO has partnered with Control Union, the accredited certifying body who can provide organic certification services to the SAOSO standard.

The Sustainability Institute

SAOSO has signed an agreement with The Sustainability Institute as the South African node of the Knowledge Hub for Organic Agriculture in Southern Africa to deliver activities on the ground that aligns with the aims and objectives of the Knowledge Centre for Organic Agriculture in Southern Africa. We are hopeful that this project will extend through to 2025.

Access Agriculture

Promoting the transition towards organic farming and agroecology across the global South.


The Biodynamic Agricultural Association Southern Africa strives to strengthen and advance the practice of biodynamic agriculture.

Climate Neutral Group

To harness opportunities in the carbon market, SAOSO has partnered with the Climate Neutral Group to facilitate access to the AgriCarbon Programme, where producers are rewarded for their sustainable farming practices.

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  • SAOSO is the South African node of the Knowledge Hub for Organic Agriculture in Southern Africa (KHSA). KHSA aims to scale up adoption of organic farming practices in the Southern African region over a four-year period. The South African-based Sustainability Institute provides support for project implementation in the region.

    KHSA is part of the Knowledge Centre for Organic Agriculture in Africa (KCOA) project. The KCOA project is a collaborative country-led partnership funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaftfür Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and non-governmental organisations.

    KHSA focuses project activities in Zambia, led by Participatory Ecological Land Use Management (PELUM) Zambia; in Namibia, led by the Namibia Nature Foundation in collaboration with the Namibian Organic Association; and in South Africa, led by the South African Organic Sector Organisation.GIZ is also implementing this project in north, east, west and central Africa.

  • To expand the awareness and uptake of organic farming methods, SAOSO has partnered with PGS SA to train and support 20 PGS Pollinators or community practitioners to establish new PGS groups in South Africa.

    Participatory Guarantee Systems (PGS) are the ideal vehicle to group small holder farmers together to allow aggregation of produce to enable access to local markets with an assurance to customers that they are organic. Knowledge exchanged during farm visits substitute for extension services and can advise on organic best practice.

  • SAOSO and PGS SA are part of the technical working group tasked with harmonising the SANS:1369 Standard for Organic Production and Processing and the SAOSO Standard for Organic Production and Processing v1.7 to the latest version of the IFOAM norms and standards.

    Version 2 of the SAOSO Standard will see the inclusion of standards for wild harvesting, bee keeping and honey production, aquaculture and insect production. This will also mean that the SABS Standard will be part of the international IFOAM Family of Standards of which SAOSO is already a member.