THE GROWING organic movement has been recognised by the education sector, with a university announcing it would offer Australia's first university level organic food production course.
In an Australia-first move, Southern Cross University, which has campuses at the Gold Coast, Lismore and Coffs Harbour, will have a Graduate Certificate in Organic Food and Nutrition course.
The eight-month part-time course will develop students' knowledge and practice in organic farming, sustainable and ethical food systems, the produce journey, and connection between organic food and health.
The organic sector has welcomed the news of an official course on organic production principles.
Niki Ford, chief executive of Australian Organic Ltd, said the course was a fantastic development.
"It is quite exciting that people can now study a graduate certificate in organic food and nutrition at a formal level," Ms Ford said.
"Such a qualification is an enormous signal of the progress the organic industry has made over the past many years and will no doubt pave the way for new research and diverse opportunities."
The course, which is offered by Southern Cross's new National Centre for Naturopathic Medicine (NCNM), has been 12 months in development.
The NCNM, which opened this year at Lismore, is the first institution in Australia to offer postgraduate pathways in naturopathy.