Towards Organic Asia Network was formally set up in 2011, with the gathering of partners from 5 Asian countries; Bhutan, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam. The agreed aim of the network was to work with partner organizations to strengthen together the organic movement in the region by advancing sustainable and resilient approaches to food, agriculture and livelihoods, which look beyond producers to build linkages with consumers and marketing mechanisms.
The programme’s priorities in the first year were to explore possibilities for partnership, and communicate and establish working connections with groups/individuals in Asia. The major activities included;
(1) Study visit for developing partnerships with farmers group and organizations in Myanmar, Bhutan and Laos
(2) Representation at the 17th Organic World Congress and IFOAM General Assembly
(3) Partnership building meeting in Thailand
(4) Public event at Greenfair’06 and Symposium on Organic Agriculture for Society at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand
Partnerships with one further country (Cambodia)have developed, based upon shared cross-border experiences and needs, expanding the network within the Mekong region.