Over 40,000 organic industry professionals descended on Nuremberg, Germany, last week for the Biofach World Organic Fair.
This year’s show was an upbeat affair, with many industry insiders confident that the organic market would record modest but steady growth over the coming few years, having ridden out the worst of the recession.
Figures compiled by the Biofach organisers show that worldwide sales amounted to 55 billion US dollars in 2009 (IFOAM), while:
• organic products worth €5.9 billion landed in shopping baskets in Germany in 2010 (BÖLW).
• organic sales at retail value in France were around €3 billion in 2009 (twice that of 2005 figures)
• Organic food sales in Austria — where one-fifth of agricultural land is farmed organically – were up 30% in the first quarter of 2010
Biofach says that the specialist retail trade has always been one of the driving forces behind the resilience of the organic market on continental Europe. Britain, where the major supermarkets continue to dominate organic retailing, was the only country in the EU which saw organic sales go into decline during the recession.