Organic Food is $63 Billion Global Industry

2011 is the most recent year for statistics on the growth of the organic industry worldwide, but here’s an update.

Organic food is a $63 billion industry globally, according to the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM).

From 2002-2011, the industry grew 170%, or about 19% a year.

Interestingly, the US is the largest single market for organic food (and beverages), but developing countries are the biggest producers of the food we eat.

In the US, the organic industry reached $31.5 billion in sales, rising 9.5% from the previous year.

Approximately a third of the world’s agricultural land and more than 80% of the producers are in developing countries and emerging markets.

Germany and France are the other dominant markets for organic food and  Switzerland, Denmark and Luxemburg consume the most organic food per capita.

Organic agriculture still makes up less than 1% of the world’s farming acreage (0.9%) with 37.2 million hectares planted worldwide across 162 countries.

You might be surprised to learn that Australia leads the world in organic acreage with 12 million hectares, followed by Argentina with 3.8 million hectares. The US comes in third with 1.9 million hectares.  

Organic’s share of total agricultural land is highest in the Falkland Islands (35.9%), Liechtenstein (27.3%), and Austria (19.7%). 

Although the Oceania region has a third of the world’s organic acreage – 12.2 million hectares – it accounts for just 2.9% of farmland there. Europe, with 10.6 million hectares, has 29% of the world’s acreage, taking up 5.4 percent of the land.

Latin America has 6.9 million hectares (18.4%), North America has 2.8 million hectares (7.5%), and Africa has 1.1 million hectares (3%).

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