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Can the Market Deliver 100% Organic Seed and Varieties in Europe?

Padel, Susanne; Orsini, Stefano; Solfanelli, Francesco and Zanoli, Raffaele (2021) Can the Market Deliver 100% Organic Seed and Varieties in Europe? Sustainability, 13 (8), pp. 1-13.

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Summary

This paper considers European organic seed as a market in the sense of economic theory and explores factors impacting seed supply and demand. Under the organic regulation, farmers have to use seed multiplied in organic farming or apply for a derogation. We evaluated the functioning of the organic seed market, based on case studies of seed supply chains for arable, vegetable and forage crops; a farmer survey; and a status-quo analysis of the organic seed sector from the European LIVESEED project. The organic seed market is characterised by small size, great diversity of crops grown, unsolved technical problems for some crops and limited capacity of breeding varieties adapted to organic farming conditions. Demand vastly outstrips supply for most crops, but strong regional and sector differences were observed. A lack of information about availability and price for organic seed is likely to act as barrier to investment. Full enforcement of the regulation to use only organic seed might have unforeseen consequences, such as a reduction of agrobiodiversity in organic farming, rather than supporting an increase in supply. We conclude that the market alone is not likely to deliver 100% organic seed and government intervention is justified.


EPrint Type:Journal paper
Keywords:organic agriculture, seed, regulations, market structure, LIVESEED, liveseed
Agrovoc keywords:
Language
Value
URI
English
organic agriculture
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_15911
English
seed
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_6927
English
regulations
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_6493
English
market structure
http://aims.fao.org/aos/agrovoc/c_12405
Subjects: Food systems > Markets and trade
Crop husbandry > Breeding, genetics and propagation
Values, standards and certification > Regulation
Research affiliation: European Union > Horizon 2020 > Liveseed
Germany > Federal Research Institute for Rural Areas, Forestry and Fisheries - VTI > Institute of Farm Economics - BW
Italy > Univ. Politecnica delle Marche (prev. Univ. Ancona)
UK > Organic Research Centre (ORC) - Elm Farm
H2020 or FP7 Grant Agreement Number:727230
DOI:10.3390/su131810305
Related Links:https://www.liveseed.eu/
Deposited By: Padel, Dr Susanne
ID Code:42399
Deposited On:17 Sep 2021 12:13
Last Modified:17 Sep 2021 12:13
Document Language:English
Status:Published
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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