In 2021, NATEXBIO (federation of organic processors and distributors in France) and La Maison de la Bio (an organisation with over 10,000 organic companies and entrepreneurs), with AND International and the research firm Credoc, launched a major study to give businesses visibility on the evolution of the organic sector in France to 2027 (food and non-food).
The purpose? To help organic players plan forward in terms of investments and support their development. The findings of this study, which have just been published, quantify the effect of external factors (sociological, political, legislative, economic, etc.) on the health of the sector in France. The forward-looking study conducted by AND International and Credoc has identified four possible trajectories for the organic sector by 2027, from the most pessimistic to the most optimistic (see following figure).
The two most ambitious trajectories require strong political and public action, in particular in terms of meeting the commitment made by the Minister of Agriculture and Food, Julien Denormandie, in 2021, to reach 18% of agricultural land used for organic farming by 2027.
“Favourable” Scenario 2, with over 10% growth per year, would have major benefits for the country. This scenario aims to create value representing turnover of €23 billion (i.e. doubled) and the massive creation of jobs (+137,000 full-time jobs. It also aims to reach 18% of agricultural land used for organic farming in France (compared to 9.5% currently). The amount of exports is estimated at €9,265 M over five years, with investment from companies in the sector of €2,750 M over five years.
Several possible paths of action can help achieving this “favourable” scenario. On a public level first, the organic ecosystem needs to be reinforced, both in terms of demand and supply, through an educational policy and political relays (at government level and at every level: local authorities, French and EU parliaments, etc.). But also with the help of a public plan for innovation in organic farming and contribution from the government towards the funding of communication campaigns.
The sector therefore has everything to play for. It needs to demonstrate efficiency in order to have an impact on prices, by reducing the gap with non-organic products (particularly by optimising processes and logistics). It also needs to meet the new expectations of consumers, who want local products, made in France, or fair trade products, while continuing to increase exports to the EU (cereals, fruits and vegetables, eggs, etc.).
In addition, it must play a role in improving the scientific knowledge about the benefits of organic products, notably by developing communication initiatives:
- targeting citizen consumers, to explain the benefits of organic products for health, biodiversity protection and employment,
- targeting farmers, to promote conversions to organic farming,
- targeting opinion and political leaders about the positive environmental impact of the organic sector, with the creation of jobs in every region and its impact on the trade balance.
To discover all the initiatives of this project aiming to reach this favourable scenario, visit Natexpo, from 18 to 20 September 2022 at Eurexpo Lyon, France, to meet everyone involved in the organic sector and their innovations.
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