12. Organic fruit production in Europe

Author: Milena Dimova, Nedyalka Palagacheva, Vasiliy Dzhuvinov

DOI: n/a


Europe is the world leader in organic agriculture. IFAOM, “The International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements”, was founded in Versailles, France in 1972. In support of this movement the European Union initiated a groundbreaking act by enacting the legislation on organic farming “Regulation 2092/91” in 1991 as well as a consolidated version of the Council of the European Commission, 2002, with an EU wide official definition of organic (biological) ecological farming.

In 2010 the leading perennial crops were coffee, olives, nuts, grapes, cocoa, berries, medicinal and aromatic plants and pome and stone fruits. According to FAO data the total area of fruit grown organically in 2006 was 804 684 ha and it reached 1 144 520 ha in 2010, an increase of 42%, with Europe taking up 56% of the world total.

The largest areas of organic fruit growing in Europe in 2010 were Spain (286 000 ha), followed by Italy (266 000 ha) and France (69 000 ha). Poland, Italy, France and Germany are among the leading producers of organic apples in Europe and world-wide, Italy and Poland – of pears, Italy, Spain, France and the Czech Republic – of apricots, Italy and Poland – of cherries, Italy and Spain – of peaches and nectarines. Our neighbouring country – Turkey is among the large producers of organic apples, pears, cherries and apricots.