(CS) The number of organic farmers in Luxembourg has risen from 88 to 102, result of a national action plan to promote organic agriculture.
While Agriculture Minister Romain Schneider conceded that the plan had not succeeded in all its objectives, he nonetheless stated that organic farming and products have seen a rise in demand. “The demand is still greater than the offer,” he says.
Luxembourg ranks third in the EU
In Luxembourg, on average 103,30 euros were spent on organic products in 2009 per person, resulting in a total sales volume of around 51 million euros.
In the EU, Luxembourg ranks third behind Denmark (138 euros per person) and Austria (103.90 euros per person), but well above the member states' average of 34,70 euros per person spent on organic products in 2009.
In total sales volume, the United Kingdom places third with roughly 2.07 billion in sales. However, this breaks down to just 33,50 euros per person. Comparatively, on average 57,30 euros per person were spent on organic products in the US over the same period of time.
Objectives of action plan not met
Still, the objectives of Luxembourg's Plan d'action national were far fulfilled. With 3,924 hectars of land dedicated to organic farming (roughly 3%), this is well below the 6,000 hectars which were envisioned in the plan.
Organic farms make up only around 4.7% of all agricultural output in the Grand Duchy, also below the goal of 6%.
Nevertheless, Schneider praised the fact that there are more organic farmers now, especially in the viticulture sector along the Moselle, with numbers rising to a total of 102 organic producers.
To promote the sector even further, organic farming will be the focus of this year's agricultural fair, and the organic agricultural institute IBLA is looking into trying to incorporate organic farming into the agricultural school's curriculum.