25 years ago, the first organic labeled (Ø-labeled) products arrived in the shops. The Danes have since then bought an increasing amount of organic products every year, making us today world champions in purchasing organic food products. Over the course of the last 25 years, the purchase of organic food products in Denmark has helped remove more than three million kilos of poisonous substances from the Danish natural environment and spared approximately 4.300 billion liters of groundwater from leftovers of chemical plant protection. The Danes can take pride in this, says the chairman of Organic Denmark.
The sales of organic products have grown significantly since the first Ø-labeled products started making its way into everyday households, some 25 years ago. Today Denmark is the country in the world where the sales of organic products makes up for the largest part of the overall sales – approximately eight percent.
The unique and governmentally certified Ø-label has been very important for the widespread success organic food products have achieved in Denmark. The Ø-label makes it easier to achieve several goals at the same time and it makes a difference. Every time we buy products labeled with the Ø-label, the environment, our families and ourselves are spared from poisonous chemicals and it helps us secure that the animals from organic farms have had a good life, says the chairman of Organic Denmark, Per Kølster.
He points out that by choosing organic products the Danes are making a big impact and they can take pride in this.
Over the course of the last 25 years, the purchase of organic food products in Denmark has helped remove more than three million kilos of poisonous substances from the Danish natural environment and spared approximately 4.300 billion liters of groundwater from leftovers of chemical plant protection. In comparison, this approximates to the private water usage in Denmark over a span of 20 years. It is also the reason why, over the past 25 years, 500.000 organic cows have been let loose on the fields instead of being tied up in stables.
The way to organic success is trust
According to a study made by YouGov on behalf of the Danish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, 98 percent of the Danish population know the red Ø-label and eight out of ten trusts the label.
Trust is essential for the success of ecology in Denmark. The credibility of the Ø-label builds on a strong governmental control and the hard work of passionate people: organic farmers and others who believe in the organic idea and work every day to improve animal welfare, healthier food and a better environment for all of us. These values and dedication have been recognised and rewarded by the consumers, says Per Kølster.
45 percent of the Danish consumers buy organic food products every week and 70 percent buys it every month.
More than 25 years on organic fields
One of the organic farmers who has been producing organic food products since the birth of the Ø-label is Jan Algreen from the organic farm Søris in Northern Sealand, which is one of the biggest producers of organic vegetables in Denmark.
When we started our organic production in 1987, it was partially because we wanted to avoid chemicals in our fields. Back then many people were sceptical. Today, ecology is for everyone and the average consumer has embraced it. No one smiles condescendingly anymore when I say I am an organic farmer. On the contrary, people show respect for my work, says Jan Algreen.
The future is green
Organic Denmark believes that organic farming and the sales of organic products will redouble within the next 25 years.
The interest for the pure, local and natural is growing. This goes hand in hand with ecology. It is not only in private homes that Danes make more and more organic food. Also in large-scale catering establishments, canteens, restaurants, nurseries and rest homes more organic food is made. The ball is rolling and the future is green, says Per Kølster.
The 4.300 billion liters of groundwater that Danes have helped spare from leftovers of chemical plant protection by buying organic food products during the past 25 years equates to 8.600 billion 0,5 liter bottles. If all these bottles were stacked they could reach the moon 4,9 times. If put side by side on the ground the bottles could reach around the equator 47 times.
For more information: www.organicdenmark.dk
Read more about the development of organic sales: market report 2014
For further information:
Per Kølster, chairman Økologisk Landsforening, tlf. 2222 0737, firstname.lastname@example.org
Paul Holmbeck, direktor, Økologisk Landsforening tlf. 28191962, email@example.com
Line Skouboe, press associate, Økologisk Landsforening, tlf. 8732 2714 / 2442 6952, firstname.lastname@example.org