Recession spurs organic growth in Europe
2011 was another growth year for organic food in Europe. Economic austerity has apparently not deterred consumers from purchasing organic food. Latest figures released from Bord Bia on the Spanish market show that despite the economic difficulties in Spain, the organic food sector continues to grow with organic food production rising by 12% in 2010 and 20% in 2011. Spain is now one of the largest organic producers in Europe. The sector in Spain is estimated to be worth €1.3bn, with domestic consumption worth €905 million while exports are valued at €454m. Imports of organic food are estimated at around €200m with the main suppliers being Germany, France, UK, and The Netherlands.
“This growth trend is seen across much of Europe, with most countries showing an increase in both organic production and sales” said Gillian Westbrook, General Manager, IOFGA. “Within an Irish context it highlights the massive potential to export high quality organic products from Ireland to the rest of the EU and beyond. We need to look to countries such as Spain, Germany, France and Austria as the market leaders to see how we can further develop the organic sector here in Ireland. We have a marketing advantage as a country that produces natural food so our organic food is much sought after in Europe” she stated.
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Notes to editor:
Bord Bia recently participated at the organic trade show BioCultura, and initial results indicated a potential interest by some local distributors and retailers for organic food products like oat flakes, smoked salmon, yogurts and bread mixes.
 Claudia Saumell, Madrid Office, Bord Bia