Organics must play a bigger role in the plant-based market

Organics must play a bigger role in the plant-based market News
Organics must play a bigger role in the plant-based market

The plant agenda is gaining ground worldwide. More and more decision-makers, food companies and consumers have understood, that if we are to improve issues with climate and biodiversity, it requires a change in the way we eat. However, the focus on organics as a contributing factor in this transformation, is way too little.

And this, we need do something about.

But isn't it good enough if we simply substitute meat with vegetables? The answer is NO. The green transition and what we need to do to take care of our planet, is not only about reducing our carbon footprint, reducing the number of livestock, or dealing with food waste. It requires a more holistic approach, that protects the groundwater from being polluted with pesticides, that creates animal welfare, that treats the farmland with care, that preserves and promotes biodiversity – aspects that are all important in our work for a more sustainable future.

And this is why organics must play a significant role in the green transition, both now and in the future. It is deeply rooted in the organic principles to eat more vegetables than meat, to cultivate the land with care and respect for the nature, and to leave behind a planet that we can be proud of.

The plant-based products are often a direct competitor to the organic counterparts and challenges organics when it comes to product listings and marketing efforts. To be successful with efforts that link organics to the plant-based agenda in mature markets requires one set of skills, and is a whole different matter in so-called immature organic markets. No matter what, both scenarios offer a lot of opportunities for Danish companies and producers of organic plant-based products. To create a stronger foundation for a successful new export adventure, Organic Denmark has gathered market data about plant-based foods in Sweden and Poland. And have highlighted several potentials for organic development within this category.

With an organic share of food in 2022 (retail sales) of 8.9 per cent and 0.6 per cent., Sweden and Poland represent two markets that differ significantly from each other. In the Swedish market, people have worked with the organic agenda for a few decades, resulting in an organic retail turnover in 2022 of EUR 2.764 million per year (average yearly spend per person in Sweden is EUR 266). However, because of the recent economic fallout, the Swedish market has lost its momentum, and the development within organics is flattening.

In Poland, on the other hand, organics represents an emerging market (on average a Polish consumer spends EUR 8 on organics per year) and organic products are increasingly being introduced in various sales channels, resulting in retail sales of organic food growing more than 10 per cent per year (FiBL report, 2023). This has a direct impact on the market potential that Danish export companies face.

Common to both Sweden and Poland is, that the organic share within the plant-based food market is low, with only 6.4 per cent. and 4.6 per cent of the plant-based segment originating from organic products (Ecovia Intelligence, 2023). Thus, there is plenty of market potential for more organic plant-based products in the two markets.

If you are interested in knowing more about the opportunities in the two markets, go ahead and download Organic Denmark’s white paper here or register for the seminar "Export opportunities on the plant-based market in Sweden and Poland" here:

Peter Rasmussen, Business Development Manager at Organic Denmark