The market of organic products in Europe is generally expanding. The annual growth is between 10 - 15%. The organic food production has been strictly regulated in the European Union. Particular competence requirements need to be developed not only to achieve economic production while ensuring compliance with the regulations, but also new knowledge, skills and competences are required for the organic food retailers in the field of certification, accreditation regulations, licensing, etc. As part of the initiative E(co)-Qualify 20 partners from 10 countries have developed and disseminated basics of quality assurance for training in organic retailing. In the second project phase, in E(co)-Qualify II, a comprehensive system of quality assurance for continuing education and further training in organic retail in Europe was developed. In the third project phase, in E(co)- Qualify III, the Quality Assurance System is being transferred into states that have not benefited from the original project (Greece, Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey). The existing knowledge from E(co)- Qualify II is going to be crucial for the adaptation and testing of the Quality Assurance System at the national level and modification and adaptation of the QAS for the national needs and conditions in the new countries. The intention of the introduction of a EUROPEAN QUALITY ASSURANCE SYSTEM is to offer education on the same high level with international comparable criteria and a controllable framework in the EU member states.
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