Danish Government Financially Supports Organic Food ProductionMay 8th, 2018
Cornucopia’s Take: Ten percent of the food in Denmark is organic, and organic farmers cannot meet the demands of the domestic market and export needs. In response, the Danish government has created a large financial stimulus package to help farmers convert more land to organic production. In contrast, the U.S. government has largely been indifferent to the needs of the organic marketplace and watered down this country’s organic standards, while allowing suspect imports and factory farms in organic to meet growing consumer demand.
Denmark’s government to spend a billion on organic farming
A new financial growth plan for organic agriculture worth 1.1 billion kroner (147 million euros) is to be presented by Denmark’s government on Friday.
A key element in the stimulus package is to increase the number of farmers opting to go organic, reports Finans.
As such, a total of 1.1 billion kroner in total will be spent in 2018 and 2019 in order to help farmers to convert to organic production.
The coalition government is supported by parliamentary ally the Danish People’s Party in the agricultural initiative.
Minister for Food and the Environment Esben Lunde Larsen told Ritzau that Danish organic produce was in high demand.
“There is a sense of higher demand from Danish consumers for organic products. In fact, we have the largest domestic market in the world, with over ten percent of our domestic [food] market being organic,” Larsen said.
But demand for Danish organic produce is not restricted to Denmark.
“With regard to export, we are seeing places where the middle class is growing and demand becoming larger. We see it particularly in China,” the minister said.
State-funded support for conversion to organic farming is necessary due to the high costs and time needed by individual farmers, Larsen said.
He also said that there remains a place for traditional farmers and that their needs would continue to be taken into account.
Organic farming interest organisation Økologisk Landsforening reacted with enthusiasm to the announcement.
“There is so much growth in sales, both on the domestic market and in a number of export markets, that we seriously need to get large areas converted to organic operation,” the organisation’s marketing director Henrik Hindborg told Finans.