On 25 March 2021, the European Commission presented an Action Plan for the development of organic production. This Action Plan is in line with the EU Green Deal, the Farm to Fork and Biodiversity Strategies and aims to boost the production and consumption of organic products to reach 25% of agricultural land under organic farming by 2030 and to significantly increase organic aquaculture.
There are several expected benefits from organic production, including:
- organic fields have around 30% more biodiversity,
- organically farmed animals enjoy a higher degree of animal welfare and take fewer antibiotics, and
- organic farmers have higher incomes and are more resilient to disruptions, such as market or weather changes.
The Action Plan includes 23 actions to ensure balanced growth in the organic sector. These actions are structured around 3 axes: boosting consumption, increasing production and further improving the sustainability of the organic sector. Each Member State is encouraged to develop its own national organic action plan to increase its national share of organic farming. Currently, there are significant differences between the Member States on the share of agricultural land under organic farming, ranging from 0.5% to 25%. These national organic action plans will need to complement the national Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) strategic plan and set out measures going beyond agriculture and what is offered under CAP.
The Advanced Technologies for Industry (ATI) project has recently published several reports relating to the agriculture sector. They include two Product Watch reports on Photonics technology for high-intensity farming and Satellites and drones for less intensive farming and arable crops. For more information, read the reports and explore the ATI website.