Biofach: Catalonia Can Become Organic Leader

Organic crops in the Maresme, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona

Media Advisory

Nuremberg, Germany, February 12, 2018:- As global organic food producers converge on Nuremberg for BIOFACH, the world’s leading organic food trade fair, Catalonia – a pioneer of organic farming since the 1970s – can become a world leader in the sector, according to international organic food consultant Nathalie Parès.

Local demand for organic food is growing rapidly: +37% in 2015 compared to the previous year (+25% for Spain for the same period – latest available data) and, at the current rate the Catalan certification body CCPAE predicts that organic’s  market share could reach 25% of all food sales by 2020 (1).

However, with only 12% of Catalan farmland dedicated to organic production, Catalan customers – who have an affinity for proximity “km0” products – currently depend on organic suppliers from other countries. A recent study from 2014 demonstrates that by converting all of Catalonia’s farmland to organic, combined with a move towards a healthier mediterranean diet and less meat consumption, could not only fully satisfy the demand for organic products, but could actually achieve food sovereignty for the 7.5 million people living in Catalonia.

“With demand for organic food soaring in Catalonia, there’s never been a better time for Catalan producers to switch to organic production. Instead of being the EU capital of GMOs (2), Catalonia could become the beacon of organic food and gastronomy”, said Nathalie Parès, a Barcelona-based international organic food consultant and IFOAM Organic Leadership Fellow, currently present at Biofach.

“There are several steps needed to  forge a brilliant future for the Catalan organic sector. First, the sector needs to organise itself to speak with one voice to defend its interests, as has happened EU countries like France (FNAB), Italy (FederBio) or, more recently, Organic Sweden. Second, Catalan distributors and retailers must find a new ways of selling organic foods, and break with the lack of  choice, poor quality and high prices currently offered by retailers. Finally, politics matter; some political movements in Catalonia have demonstrated their readiness to take environmental and sustainability challenges seriously. The third report on climate change in Catalunya (2016) lists organic farming as a way to adapt and mitigate climate change (3)  – which is quite remarkable and something the sector should take advantage of”.


Nathalie Parès on ‭+34 691 825 067‬ or


Biofach runs from February 14-17th, in Nuremberg, Germany.

  1. by Pep Tuson