Three leading organic groups – Organic Sweden, Ekologiska Lantbrukarna and KRAV – have welcome continued investments in Sweden’s organic food and farming sectors.
Yesterday (21 September) the Government announced today that the Swedish Board of Agriculture would receive SEK 25 million (around €2.5 million) per year 2021–2023 for continued work with the coordination function for organic foods as part of the national food strategy. Thanks to this newly announced provision, funds are now provided for continued work to achieve the economic goals set for 2030.
Commenting on the development, Charlotte Bladh André (pictured), CEO of Organic Sweden, said: “There is a large consumer group who choose organic, but who also want the food to be Swedish. With these investments, we can continue to strengthen the competitiveness of Swedish organic farmers and food companies in relation to the imported food.”
Sofia Sollén-Norrlin, operations manager at Organic Farmers, added: “For Swedish organic farmers, this means that more can be done together to increase demand and prices for the farmer for the organic food, so that the organic goals can be achieved in balance with the market.”
In recent years, organic farming has been identified in more and more contexts as a valuable tool for sustainable food production. Several reports from UN institutions such as the FAO, the IPBES and the IPCC highlight the methods used by organic farmers as examples of sustainable agriculture. The EU’s “Farm to Fork” strategy as well as the EU 2030 Biodiversity Strategy contain ambitious goals for 2030 with a bearing on organic production. Among other things, the target of 25 percent organic agricultural land within the EU by 2030.
The Swedish government has also set ambitious economic targets for 2030 and is now also investing funds to achieve these targets. The three Swedish organic groups say this is important from several perspectives:
- Organic is a tool for achieving several of our Swedish environmental goals as well as the UN’s global sustainability goals.
- Organic and KRAV-labeled are established market concepts that strongly contribute to both profitability and competitiveness.
- Organic production is also less vulnerable, which has become an important issue when Sweden’s self-sufficiency ability is discussed in the wake of the Corona crisis.
- For the industry, the investment is an important confirmation that ecological approaches are seen as a central part of the solution to society’s challenges in sustainability.
“We are pleased that the recently established budget has given priority to organic, which is an important means of driving sustainable development in the food sector, says Anita Falkenek,” CEO of KRAV.
Main image: Vall och slåtter/KRAV