UK organic market strengthens ahead of Organic September

organic september

With Organic September round the corner, the Soil Association is predicting overall value of the organic market in the UK to exceed £2 billion by the end of this year.

According to Nielsen data, strong organic growth has continued through the first half of 2016 and is now up 5.2% compared to 3.2% at the end of 2015 through supermarket sales, against a decline of 0.9% in non-organic sales for the same period.

“Despite an uncertain market following Brexit, Soil Association Certification is positive about the future of organic,” commented Clare McDermott, business development director at Soil Association Certification. “Market growth is strong and there is a clear demand for organic, environmentally-friendly and sustainable purchasing with many young professionals. The UK will still be required to comply with EU organic standards as minimum to maintain the flow of organic products to and from the EU and the Soil Association will continue to influence and improve the marketplace for organic businesses.”

Key areas of growth in the organic market so far for 2016 include fresh produce, which remains buoyant, as well as canned and packaged groceries, driven by big increases in cereals, tea, biscuits, jams, spreads and oils and vinegars.

Many retailers have already signalled their support for Organic September and will be organizing a range of activities, including on pack promotion using the Soil Association’s Organic September stickers, range promotions, organic events and sampling throughout the month.

“Whole Foods Market will have a significant number of events, price promotions and product launches for Organic September,” said Benjamin Woodgate, UK marketing director of the chain. “The point of sale material produced by the Soil Association is the best I have ever seen for the campaign – we will be using this in store and would encourage other retailers to do the same with the goal for the industry to attract and educate more shoppers to eat, drink, use, choose organic products this September.”

Kellie Bubble Co-operative grocer from Unicorn Grocery store in Manchester commented: “Organic September is a brilliant campaign for independent retailers and we’re really excited to be involved. We’re going to be celebrating the benefits organic growing gives back to us all – the insects, the bees, the birds, the healthy soil for future generations to live off! The free marketing materials are really helpful for independent outlets like us and we’ll definitely be using them to make more people aware of organic produce and the wider benefits it brings. Ethical principles are at the core of our business and Organic September is a great opportunity to promote them.”

The Soil Association is helping all retailers and businesses get involved with free marketing support and involvement in the targeted Organic September campaign. For more details visit