Action plan for organic production in the EU
Organic farming is the way forward for a more sustainable food system and future. In Europe, we are becoming increasingly aware of this reality and the EU is responding quickly to the urgent demands of climate change.
An example of this is the action plan that the EU launched on 25th March 2021, divided into three interconnected axes that reflect the structure of the food supply chain and the ambitions of the Green Deal sustainability goals:
Axis 1: stimulate demand and ensure consumer trust
Axis 2: stimulating conversion and strengthening the entire value chain
Axis 3: organic farming leading the way - improving organic farming's contribution to environmental sustainability
In the last 10 years retail sales of organic products have grown by more than 145%, from approximately €18 billion in 2009 to €41 billion in 2019. On average, each European spends about €84 per year on organic products. As consumers, we should look for certified organic products and for this there is a seal that guarantees the traceability of organic products in the European Union. Look for it on the products when you do your shopping.
Production and processing
The area of organic farming production has increased by almost 66% in the last 10 years - from 8.3 million hectares in 2010 to 13.8 million hectares in 2019. It now represents 8.5 percent of the EU's total usable agricultural area, which is still far from the 25 percent set for 2030. We will therefore see a radical change in the way we produce food across Europe, with the aim of reaching the targets set. Concerted action will be needed from all the bodies involved.
Organic production has numerous benefits for everyone. But the biggest benefit is to the environment, and in the long term we will see the positive results of this on climate change.
Organically farmed land has about 30% more biodiversity than conventionally farmed land. Organic farming is, for example, beneficial for pollinators. Organic farmers are not allowed to use chemical pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. In addition, the use of GMOs and ionizing radiation is prohibited, and the use of antibiotics is severely restricted.
You can learn more about these actions in the following articles: