Goy, Iris Angela and Waibel, Hermann (2005) Situationsanalyse des ökologischen Gartenbaus in Deutschland. [Institutional and Economic conditions of Organic Horticulture in Germany.] In: Heß, J and Rahmann, G (Eds.) Ende der Nische, Beiträge zur 8. Wissenschaftstagung Ökologischer Landbau, kassel university press GmbH, Kassel.
Information on the situation of organic horticulture in Germany is scarce and thus poses a constraint to further development of the sector. For example, not much is known about the costs of acquiring information necessary for the decision to switch from conventional to organic production. The objective of this project is twofold: (1) to describe the institutional and economic conditions of organic horticulture in Germany (2) to assess the costs of acquiring information incurred by decision-makers before, during and after the decision to start organic production.
Data are being collected by expert interviews and farm surveys. Initial results show that experts from the fields of certification, monitoring, extension, marketing and research expect a more pronounced differentiation of the size and specialisation of farms. Generally, organic farms will grow larger in size due to economies of scale. Enterprises, which market their produce directly, will tend to become more diversified. The expert interviews also confirmed the hypothesis that the costs of information are significant. This results from the fact that knowledge on conventional production is only partially applicable to organic production and has to be replaced by learning and understanding a new system. Further details on the role of information costs in decision-making are expected from the farm surveys.
The study ultimately will show possible ways of increasing the efficiency of the information management process for horticultural organic producers.
Repository Staff Only: item control page