Organic farming is taking off in Portugal. CAP subsidies are a major factor behind this increased interest. Organic farms are still a small proportion of the country’s total farms (0.2% of the number of farms and 1.3% of the farmland). They are mostly extensive (low input) Mediterranean farms located in the mainland interior and less developed regions. Large farms and highly educated farmers are the most representative among those who are converting. Olive oil is the main organic production now reaching about 6% of the total land area in this activity. Twenty-one organic distributors, processors, farmer associations, and certification bodies were interviewed to assess the market barriers for organic food in Portugal. Results show that distribution channels are short. Bottlenecks exist in domestic supply. Most of the organic food consumed in Portugal is imported. Certification has some problems. In general, consumers are not aware enough of organic products or don’t have a willingness to pay a high price premium. However, a segment of highly educated urban consumers with above average income does exist and the market potential is growing. Consumers buy organic food for health reasons. The possibility of introducing an in-conversion food market to help farms in conversion to organic was ruled out as it could create noise in the organic food market. The Portuguese government and the EU should concentrate their efforts in promoting the organic food market and in educating consumers.
|Title of host publication||Marketing Trends For Organic Food In The 21st Century|
|Place of Publication||London|
|Publisher||World Scientific Publishing Co.|
|Number of pages||18|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2004|