Again this year, the data unveiled by the French Agence Bio, which is in charge of regulating organic products, confirmed the momentum of the organic industry in France, with consumption and production experiencing constant growth. In 2020, despite this strangeness of the year being marked by a pandemic, the large majority of organic industries continued to grow.
In 2020, there were more than 53,000 organic farmers in France, representing nearly 12% of the total. Agricultural surface area dedicated to organic agriculture have doubled in five years to attain over 6 million acres, or nearly 10% of the total agricultural area in France. This makes French organic agricultural areas among the largest in Europe.
Among the different crops that had the highest organic growth, you find field crops (+29%), wine production (+22%), vegetables (+16%), and aromatic and medicinal plants (+16%). Additionally, the French regions that were historically the least involved in organic agricultural production (Grand Est, Hauts-de-France, Centre-Val de Loire, Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, Réunion, Guadeloupe, Mayotte, and Île de France) saw their organic agricultural surface area grow by more than 15% over 2019.
In 2020, nearly one organic farm in three is involved in animal husbandry, a bit more than 17,000 farmers. Among them, nearly 2,500 are new to organic agriculture. There has also been a strong growth in apiculture (+26%), egg-laying hen production (+13%), and goat production (+40%).
In one year, jobs grew by 12% in organic industries
From production to distribution, organic actors are more and more numerous. Compared to the previous year, their proportion grew by 13% in agricultural production (+5,994 organic farms), and by 12% further down the chain of production (+2,704 businesses involved in organic production).
Job growth also preserved its momentum, with a 12% increase over 2019. The organic sector today represents more than 200,000 jobs in France, spread across the chain.
In 2020, the organic market surpassed 13 billion euros in value for the first time. France is now the second largest European market for organic products, after Germany.