A book summarises the main findings of a Swiss-Bulgarian research project, coordinated by the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL). Applying the methods developed in earlier projects on Central and Eastern European organic agriculture, the socio-economic department of FiBL collaborated with their partners at Sofia University to analyse the institutional development and the policy networks of the Bulgarian organic sector.
Organic farming in Bulgaria, as is the case in many post-socialist countries, did not develop in a similar pattern to Western European countries. While in Western Europe, organic farming developed based on a social movement of farmers and consumers that gradually became recognised by general agricultural policy, there was no such movement in Bulgaria. Foreign support and the EU accession including newly availably subsidies for organic agriculture initiated a top-down process for organic farming development.
The book presents the results of a three-year research project analysing how organic farming emerged and how it is practiced in Bulgaria in terms of institutions, markets and collective practice, who the organic operators are, how they perceive their activity, what the main problems are for the development of the sector and which elements are key to developing sustainable organic farming practices in the country. It is the first sociological attempt to trace, from a historical perspective, the emergence of a sector that is new to Bulgaria, but which is constantly growing at a global level.
shop.fibl.org: Organic Farmin in Bulgaria (1990-2012)
The following publications from the project have been published in scientific journals:
- Slavova, P., Moschitz, H., & Georgieva, Z. (2016). Development of Organic Agriculture in Bulgaria (1990–2012): Actors, Relations, and Networks. Sociologia Ruralis. doi:10.1111/soru.12134
- Jahrl, I., Moschitz, H., Stolze, M. (2016). Growing under the common agricultural policy: The institutional development of organic farming in Central and Eastern European countries from 2004 to 2012.
- Moschitz, H., Hrabalova, A., & Stolze, M. (2016). Dynamics of Policy Networks. The Case of Organic Farming Policy in the Czech Republic. Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning, 18(4), 406-425.