Organic food sales break billion pound barrier

Date Published: 28/12/2005

Organic food sales have broken through the one billion pound barrier, according to a new report.

Market analysts, Mintel, said sales of organic food had almost doubled in value to £1.2billion since 2000.

This increase in sales has coincided with an apparent reduction in the amount of organic food sold through the main supermarket chains.

Discussing the issue on BBC Radio Five Live, Organic Farmers and Growers’ Chief Executive, Richard Jacobs, said: “A lot of farmers are now turning to selling directly, either through farmers markets or from farm shops or through box schemes.

“This means they get a better price because there isn’t a great chain taking profit out of the price they are selling at.”

Mintel has predicted that sales of organic food will rise by another 72%, taking them to the £2billion mark by 2010.

When challenged by Five Live presenter Micky Clarke that organic was simply “back to horse manure, basically”, Mr Jacobs responded: “No, it’s not. It’s taking the best of the old, traditional farming systems and marrying it together with a lot of science and technology, looking at ways of producing food that are beneficial in terms of health, the environment and food safety.”