A total of 172.5 million acres were organically managed worldwide at the end of 2017, up 20 percent over the previous year and the largest annual growth ever recorded.
That’s according to the 2019 edition of the World of Organic Agriculture, the annual statistical yearbook from the the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) and IFOAM – Organics International, the umbrella group for the global organic movement.
The 352-page report, which contains data for 2017, also said market research company Ecovia Intelligence estimates the value of the global organic food and beverage market in 2017 at $97 billion, up 8 percent over 2016. The global market for organic food reached $89.7 billion in 2016, up 9.9 percent compared to 2015 when sales were pegged at $81.6 billion, a 1.6 percent increase over 2014, which had jumped 10 percent compared to 2013.
Globally, 1.4 percent of all farmland is organic. Australia dwarfs all other countries in terms of organic agricultural area with 88 million acres at the end of 2017, a 31 percent increase over 2016, which showed 20 percent growth over 2015.
Argentina is second with 8.4 million acres, up 13 percent from 2016, followed closely by China, which had 7.4 million acres, a 31 percent increase over 2016, which showed 42 percent growth over 2015.
In 2017, 2.9 million organic producers were reported, which is 5 percent more than in 2016. India continues to be the country with the highest number of producers with 835,200, followed by Uganda with 210,352, and Mexico with 210,000.
A summary of the 2019 report’s findings include: