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Organic Farming Statistics

Organic agriculture world-wide and in Europe

The main results of the latest survey on certified organic agriculture world-wide show (data end of 2017) that nearly 70 million hectares of agricultural land are managed organically. Growth was noted for all important indicators: Area, producers and retail sales.

The regions with the largest areas of organically managed agricultural land are Oceania (35.9 million hectares or 51 percent of the global organic farmland), Europe (14.6 million hectares or 21 percent of the global organic farmland) and Latin America (8.0 million hectares or 11 percent). The countries with the most organic agricultural land are Australia (35.7 million hectares), Argentina (3.4 million hectares) and China (3.0 million hectares).

On a global level, the organic agricultural land area increased by 11.7 million hectares or 20 percent compared with 2016.

The highest shares of organic agricultural land are in Liechtenstein (37.9 percent) and Samoa (37.6 percent).

There were over 2.8 million producers, and the countries with the highest numbers of producers are India, Uganda and Mexico.

The market research company Ecovia Intelligence estimates the global market for organic food to have reached 97 billion US dollars in 2017 (approximately 90 billion euros). The United States is the leading market with 40 billion euros, followed by Germany (10 billion euros), France (7.9 billion euros), and China (7.6 billion euros). In 2017, most of the major markets showed double-digit growth rates The highest per capita spending was in Switzerland (288 Euros), and Denmark has the highest organic market share (13.3 percent of the total food market). The regions with the largest areas of organically managed agricultural land are Oceania (22.8 million hectares or 45 percent of the global organic farmland), Europe (12.7 million hectares or 25 percent of the global organic farmland) and Latin America (6.8 million hectares or 15 percent). The countries with the most organic agricultural land are Australia (22.7 million hectares), Argentina (3.1 million hectares) and the United States (2.0 million hectares).

Europe

The organic market in Europe continues to grow. In 2017, it increased by almost 11 percent and reached 37.3 billion euros (European Union: 34.3 billion Euros). Almost all the major markets enjoyed double-digit growth rates. Farmland increased by nearly 8 percent.

Germany is the largest organic market in Europe (10 billion euros), followed by France (7.9 billion euros), Italy (3.1 billion euros) and Switzerland (2.4 billion euros) (2017 data). Globally, Germany is the second largest market after the U.S. (40 billion euros in 2017).

The trend of the market growing faster than organic farmland continued in 2017. However, it is encouraging that the area of organic farmland grew at a faster rate than it had in past years: it increased by one million hectares or by 7.6 percent. At the end of 2017, 14.6 million hectares were under organic management in Europe (in the European Union, 12.8 million hectares). This constitutes 2.9 percent and 7.2 percent respectively of the total agricultural land. The countries with the largest organic farmland areas are Spain (2.1 million hectares), Italy (1.9 million hectares) and France (1.7 million hectares). In each of these three countries reported a significant increase in the area of organic farmland. Ten European countries report that at least 10 percent of their farmland is organic and the highest organic shares worldwide are in Liechtenstein (37.9 percent), Austria (24.0 percent) and Estonia (18.8 percent).

Further information

organic-world.net: Information and background material on "The World of Organic Agriculture", edition 2019