Organic meat producers in Scandinavia are stepping up export activities as market growth rates slow in the region.

New research by Organic Monitor shows that organic meat sales in Scandinavia increased by 9.2% to €298m (US$322.7m) in 2002. The organic meat products market was expanding by over 20% per annum in the late 1990s; however, growth rates have slowed in recent years due to consumer demand stabilising.

Scandinavian organic meat revenues are projected to expand by 35.3% to €403m in 2009. The market drivers are to be marketing campaigns of supermarkets and lowering retail prices. The highest growth is to be in the organic beef segment, which is projected to take a 5% share of beef sales at the end of the forecast period.

There are 723,000 hectares of organic farmland in Scandinavia, representing 9.4% of total agricultural land. Sweden accounts for over half of the organic farmland in the region. There is a large number of organic livestock farmers in Denmark and Sweden. However, there are very few organic meat producers in Finland. Low conversion subsidies, stringent organic livestock production standards and low consumer demand are factors behind the small number of Finnish organic meat producers.

Organic Monitor found the supply-side for organic meat to be highly concentrated in each country. The large meat companies dominate and they are utilising their marketing and distribution infrastructure for conventional meat products to alleviate excess capacity to export markets. Denmark is the largest exporter with roughly 20% of Danish organic meat volumes sold outside the country. Apart from Europe, Danish companies have made successful inroads in the American and Japanese organic meat markets.

To find out more about a new report on the Scandinavian Market for Organic Meat Products, click here.