Hens
4 June 2019

French organic farming in better shape than ever

The momentum of organic farming in France was strengthened in 2018, primarily on the production side. In addition to an increase in land used for organic farming and in the consumption of organic products, jobs were also created, with the sector experiencing the strongest growth it has seen in the last six years.
 
Having doubled in five years, French organic production recorded its strongest growth.

An additional 5,000 farms were certified organic in 2018. In total, 41,600 farms are involved in organic farming throughout France, representing nearly 9.5% of all farms. Organic UAA (utilised agricultural area) was 2 million hectares in 2018, or 7.5% of total UAA, which represents a 17% increase in organically cultivated land compared to 2017.

The conversion of livestock farms is fast-growing, responding to strong consumer demand. In 2018, the number of organic laying hens represented 13.3% of the total national flock.

Occitanie, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and New Aquitaine were the top three regions with the highest number of organic producers in 2018.

Consumption still rising

On the consumption side, the French organic market is becoming increasingly accessible. Almost 5% of French household food consumption consists of products from the organic farming sector. In 2018, the market grew by 15% to €9.7 billion.

The consumption of organic products is growing across all product families. 69% of organic products consumed in France are produced in France.

The influence of major retail chains grew in terms of sales of organic products in 2018, with 49% of the market share. Specialised organic shops represented 34% of sales, and direct sales 12%.

The percentage of organic products in mass catering increased by 27% compared to 2017, mainly owing to the adoption of the EGalim law.

Finally, the French organic market is the second largest in the European Union, with €9.8 billion.