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Factors Affecting the Use of Organic Seed by Organic Farmers in Europe


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Orsini, Stefano; Costanzo, Ambrogio; SOLFANELLI, FRANCESCO; Zanoli, Raffaele; Padel, Susanne; Messmer, Monika; Winter, Eva and Schäfer, Freya (2020) Factors Affecting the Use of Organic Seed by Organic Farmers in Europe. Sustainability, 2020 (12), p. 8540.

[img] PDF - Published Version - English

Online at: https://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/12/20/8540/pdf


The new European Organic Regulation 2018/848 has announced the phasing out of derogations for the use of untreated non-organic seed by 2036. However, the use of organic seed by organic farmers is currently limited. This paper aims to identify the factors affecting the use of organic seed. It is based on data collected from 749 organic farmers in 20 European countries, by conducting an online survey and using a network sampling. Results of the descriptive statistics and linear mixed models indicate that: (1) the situation of organic seed use is not consistent across geographical regions and crop sectors; (2) the use of organic seed is higher on farms selling directly to consumers than on those selling to supermarkets; (3) larger and more recently converted farms use less organic seed than established organic farms. In the second part of the paper, we analyse
farmers’ attitudes towards organic seed use. The structural equation model (SEM) suggests that the highest contribution to explaining intention to use organic seed comes from social norms, i.e., farmers’ perception of societal expectations, particularly from the consumer and the organic certifier. Such expectations, if communicated in the public and political discourse, could stimulate the use of organic seed.

EPrint Type:Journal paper
Agrovoc keywords:
Englishorganic agriculturehttp://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_15911
Englishcertification schemeshttp://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_06049ef3
Subjects: Crop husbandry > Production systems > Pasture and forage crops
Crop husbandry > Production systems > Cereals, pulses and oilseeds
Crop husbandry > Production systems > Vegetables
Crop husbandry > Production systems > Fruit and berries
Values, standards and certification > Regulation
Research affiliation: Germany > FiBL Germany - Research Institute of Organic Agriculture
European Union > Horizon 2020 > Liveseed
Switzerland > FiBL - Research Institute of Organic Agriculture Switzerland > Socio-Economics
Italy > Univ. Politecnica delle Marche (prev. Univ. Ancona)
UK > Organic Research Centre (ORC) - Elm Farm
H2020 or FP7 Grant Agreement Number:727230
Deposited By: Padel, Dr Susanne
ID Code:38506
Deposited On:16 Oct 2020 09:29
Last Modified:20 Oct 2020 10:34
Document Language:English
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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