IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Two wrongs don’t make a right: state and private organic certification in New Zealand dairy

Listed author(s):
  • Rebecca L Schewe
Registered author(s):

    The global agrifood system is governed by a wide array of organic labels, certifications, and standards. Many of these labels are private, third-party certifications rather than strictly governmental standards; even many national organic standards such as the United States Department of Agriculture National Organic Program (USDA NOP) are actually a hybridization of state-led and private regulatory schemes. Both state-led and private agricultural regulations raise concerns over their relevance to local environments, consistent and transparent application, and extent of democratic stakeholder involvement. This study compares two organic regulations—the USDA NOP and Demeter International—in New Zealand’s dairy industry on these key issues of relevance, consistency, transparency, and democracy. I find that the hybrid state/private regulation of the USDA NOP has replicated weaknesses of both state and private regulatory models: the monolithic and hegemonic nature of state regulation has combined with the lack of consistency, transparency, and democracy of private regulation. By comparison, Demeter International certification uses an international equivalency program to increase democratic stakeholder involvement from farmers and relevance to local environments, but has not fully addressed concerns of consistency and transparency associated with private regulations. By focusing on both the structural aspects of neoliberal regulations and farmers’ and processors’ lived experience of these disparate regulations, this research expands existing theories of neoliberalization to address the diversity of regulation.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    File Function: abstract
    Download Restriction: Fulltext access restricted to subscribers, see for details

    File URL:
    File Function: main text
    Download Restriction: Fulltext access restricted to subscribers, see for details

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Pion Ltd, London in its journal Environment and Planning A.

    Volume (Year): 43 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 6 (June)
    Pages: 1421-1437

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:43:y:2011:i:6:p:1421-1437
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:43:y:2011:i:6:p:1421-1437. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Neil Hammond)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.