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Luxembourg - Country report

by Raymond Aendekerk, Research Institut of Organic Agriculture (IBLA)

This article was originally written for the publication "Organic in Europe", published by the IFOAM EU Group in collaboration with the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL, Switzerland, and the Mediterranean Institute for Agronomic Research CIHEAM-IAM, Bari, Italy.

Key indicators 2012

  • Organic agricultural area: 3,924 hectares
  • Operators:
    • Organic producers: 102
    • Organic processors: 43 (2009)
    • Organic importers: no data
    • Organic exporters: no data
  • Retail sales: EUR 75 million

Data indicators: ASTA, Eurostat and IBLA.

History of organic farming

  • 1987: First bio-dynamic farm opens in Luxembourg
  • 1988: Two farmers’ associations (Bio-LABEL and Demeter) are founded
  • 1989: The farmers’ cooperative BIOG is founded
  • 2007: The Research Institute of Organic Agriculture IBLA is founded
  • 2012: The two organic organisations bio-LABEL and Demeter merge to form Bio-Letzebuerg

Key sector institutions

Production base: land use and key crops

Of the total area of 3,720 hectares of organic agricultural land (2010)

  • 51.7 % consists of permanent grassland and grazing areas,
  • 41.8 % arable land, and
  • 3.3 % permanent crops.

The key arable crops are

  • green fodder from arable land (713 hectares),
  • cereals (633 hectares),

and protein crops (74 hectares).

The key permanent crops are

  • fruits (87 hectares) and
  • grapes (22 hectares).

Market

Luxembourg’s organic market has grown steadily by 5-10 % per year, for a number of years. The country now has a small but well developed market, with one of the highest per capita consumption rates for organic products in the world. At least 80 % of the organic products are imported.

  • Market channels: 45 % general retailers, 45 % specialised retailers, 5 % direct marketing, 5 % other channels.
  • Exports and imports: Data on exports and imports are not publically available. It can be assumed that Luxembourg imports around 80 % of the organic products that are consumed nationally. Exports are nearly zero.

Standards, legislation, organic logo

EU legislation on organic farming and other regulations apply in Luxembourg.

There is no national logo for organic products. The two logos of Bio-Letzebuerg (Demeter and bio-LABEL) are used.

Policy support

  • National action plan: An action plan for organic food and farming is in place in Luxembourg (2009–2013), covering research, marketing and processing, public awareness, schooling, and training. The plan is financed by the Ministry of Agriculture. More information available at: www.ibla.lu and http://www.bio-letzebuerg.lu/
  • Support under the EU rural development programme: Payments are granted under a special organic scheme (environment), which has been in operation since the beginning of the 1990s.
  • Other policy support: The Ministry of Agriculture supports the organic advisory services and the farmers’ organisation Bio-Letzebuerg.

Research & advice

The main institutions that conduct research into organic agriculture are the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (IBLA), and the Centre de Recherche Public Gabriel Lippmann, www.crpgl.lu. The IBLA advisory service provides specialised advice to farmers and winegrowers, as well as training courses and technical information for practitioners.

Challenges & outlook

One of the key challenges is the need to ensure a better domestic supply of organic food. Despite the rapidly growing market, the country’s farmers are not converting. This problem is currently being actively addressed by Bio-Letzebuerg and the IBLA advisory service, who are working with actors in processing and marketing.

Further information

For other relevant websites, see the sections on key sector institutions and research & advice.

Contact

Raymond Aenderkerk
Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (IBLA)
13, rue Gabriel Lippmann
5365 Munsbach
Luxembourg
Tel.: +352 2615 2388
Fax: +352 2615 1386
aendekerk@no-spam.ibla.lu
www.ibla.lu

Organic in Europe 2014

  • Organic in Europe 2014 - Prospects and Developments
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