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Country Report on Organic Farming Research in Norway

Løes, Anne-Kristin and Schjøth, Johanne E. (2006) Country Report on Organic Farming Research in Norway. In: Stefan, Lange; Ute, Williges; Saxena, Shilpi and Willer, Helga (Eds.) European Research in Organic Food and Farming. Reports on organisation and conduction of research programmes in 11 European countries. Bundesanstalt für Landwirtschaft und Ernährung (BLE) / Federal Agency for Agriculture and Food BLE, Bonn, Germany, pp. 186-212.

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To increase organic production and achieve the official aims, the Ministry of Agriculture and Food (until 2004: the Ministry of Agriculture) has developed a national policy specifically targeting organic farming. This is described in the action plan Prioritised Areas within the Food- and Agricultural Research, which is linked to the White Paper of 1999. Organic farming is one out of seven topics to be prioritised for research funding. For this farming method, the Ministry considers the following needs to be of greatest importance: To reduce various biological and economical risks linked to production; to increase the diversity and quality of organic products in the market
and the general knowledge of organic markets and consumers; and to increase the knowledge of the whole value chain from production via processing to distribution of organic produce. An Action Plan for Organic Production and Sales launched by the Norwegian Agricultural Authority (SLF) in 2000, and revised in 2003, states that a range of organisations and stakeholders should feel responsible for contributing towards reaching the official aims. The RCN should have a coordinating role and cover all areas of organic research. Over the years, the main funding sources for OF&F research (the RCN, AA-funding and Levy funding, see Chapter 4) have become increasingly coordinated. For all research projects funded by these bodies, the RCN is responsible for the proposal procedures and quality control. However, the use of funds is decided upon by discussions between the individual funding boards. The funding for a specific project is often composed of contributions from more than one funding body.
In later years, the government has paid more attention and devoted relatively more resources to OF&F development projects than to research projects. Market development has been regarded as the crucial task, in order to increase the demand for organic products. The Norwegian Agricultural Authority (SLF) administrates approx. € 5 million per year of public funding for development projects within the OF&F sector (38 mill. NOK in 2005 and 2006). SLF projects are not described in this report.
It is challenging to draw a clear line between OF&F development and research projects, but in this report we have chosen to define OF&F research projects as the projects funded by the three funding bodies mentioned above (the RCN, AA-funding and Levy funding).
Norway is a large country with a small and scattered population (4.4 million). The regional research within OF&F is usually of limited scientific value at an international level.

EPrint Type:Book chapter
Keywords:organic farming research, funding, structures, programmes, resarch communication, norway
Subjects:"Organics" in general > Countries and regions
Food systems > Policy environments and social economy
Knowledge management > Research methodology and philosophy > Research communication and quality
Research affiliation: European Union > CORE Organic
Norway > NORSØK - Norwegian Centre for Organic Agriculture
Norway > RCN - Research Council of Norway
Related Links:http://www.coreorganic.org
Deposited By: Løes, Anne-Kristin
ID Code:8761
Deposited On:21 Jun 2006
Last Modified:12 Apr 2010 07:33
Document Language:English
Refereed:Not peer-reviewed

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