Research: European organic market continued to grow

Frick / CH. (odn) In 2013, the European organic market grew by approximately six percent to a value of more than 24 billion EUR. Consumers in the European Union spent 22.2 billion EUR on organic food. This is shown by the latest data provided by the OrganicDataNetwork, the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL), and the Agricultural Market Information Company (AMI). Some countries, such as Switzerland, Sweden, and Norway, showed double-digit growth rates.

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The countries with the highest per capita consumption were Switzerland; with more than 200 EUR in 2013, followed by Denmark, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein, Austria, Sweden, and Germany. Switzerland is still the leader when adjusted to the purchasing power, followed by Luxembourg, Denmark, and Austria. EU inhabitants spent an average of 44 EUR on organic food in 2013. In a global context, the shares of the total food market were highest in Europe and in the United States. The highest European shares were reached in Denmark (eight percent), Switzerland (6.9 percent) and Austria (6.5 percent).

Retail sales in 2013 totalled 22.2 billion EUR in the European Union. In terms of retail sales in single markets, the four biggest markets were the United States (24.3 billion EUR), Germany (7.6 billion EUR), France (4.4 billion EUR), and China (2.4 billion Euros). The market share in the US (four percent) is comparable with that of Germany. The first market data available for 2014 show that growth continues in the big markets.

As well as the markets, the area of land under organic cultivation also continued to grow: by 0.3 million hectares. Organically cultivated land constitutes 11.5 million hectares in Europe and 10.2 million hectares in the European Union, which is 2.4 percent and 5.7 percent of the total agricultural land respectively. The countries with the largest organic areas are Spain (1.6 million hectares), Italy (1.3 million hectares), and France and Germany (1.1 million hectares each). The share of organic agricultural land is more than ten percent in eight European countries, with Liechtenstein (31 percent), Austria (19.5 percent) and Sweden (16.3 percent) having the highest organic shares.

Data collection on organic agriculture in Europe

Data collection on organic agriculture in Europe was carried out by the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) and the Agricultural Market Information Company (AMI) in collaboration with the partners of the OrganicDataNetwork project and further experts.


The project «Data network for better European organic market information» – OrganicDataNetwork – aimed to increase the transparency of the European organic food market through better availability of market intelligence about the sector to meet the needs of policy makers and actors involved in organic markets.