GERMANY, Nuremberg. The organic market in Europe continues to grow; in 2018 it will increase by almost 8% to € 40.7 bn. Many of the major markets recorded double-digit growth rates.
On the occasion of Biofach in Nuremberg, the world's leading trade fair for organic food, the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL, Agrarmarkt Informations-Gesellschaft (AMI) and partners present the analysis of the 2018 figures for the European organic sector.
In 2018, 15.6 mill. ha were organically farmed in Europe (European Union: 13.8 mill. ha). With 2.2 mill. ha, Spain continues to be the country with the largest organic area in Europe, followed by France (2.0 mill. ha) and Italy (2.0 mill. ha).
Organic area increased by 1.25 mill. ha in Europe and by one mill. ha in the European Union, which represents an increase of 8.7% in Europe and 7.6% in the European Union. In 2018, more than 290,000 ha of organic land were added in France and more than 160,000 ha in Spain.
Organic land accounts for 3.1% of the total agricultural area in Europe and 7.7% in the European Union. In Europe (and worldwide), Liechtenstein has the highest organic share of agricultural land with 38.5%, followed by Austria, the country in the European Union with the highest organic share (24.7%). Ten European countries stated that at least 10% of their agricultural land is organically farmed.
There were almost 420,000 organic producers in Europe and over 330,000 in the European Union, with Turkey being the country with the most farms (almost 80,000). The number of producers in Europe grew by 5.4% in 2018 (7.2% in the European Union).
There were almost 76,000 organic processors in Europe and nearly 71,000 in the European Union. Not quite 5,800 importers were counted in Europe and almost 5,000 in the European Union. The country with the largest number of processors was Italy (over 20,000), while Germany had the most importers (over 1,700).
Retail sales in Europe amounted to € 40.7 bn. (€ 37.4 bn. in the European Union). The European Union is the second largest single market for organic products after the United States (€ 40.6 bn.). The European country with the largest organic market is Germany (€ 10.9 bn.).
In 2018, the European market recorded growth of 7.8%. Among the key markets, the highest growth was recorded in France (15.4%). In the decade 2009-2018, retail sales in Europe and the European Union more than doubled.
In Europe, consumers spent € 50 per person on organic food in 2018 (European Union: € 76). Per capita consumer spending on organic food has doubled between 2009 and 2018. In 2018, the Danes and Swiss spent most on organic food (€ 312 per capita).
In the European countries, organic sales account for a large share of the respective total market, and Denmark has the highest organic share worldwide at 11.5%. Individual products and product groups have even higher shares. Organic eggs, for example, already account for 30% of the value of all eggs sold in several countries.