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Highest proportions of organic area recorded in Austria (11%)

Jun '07
In the EU251 in 2005, the organic area made up 3.9% of the total utilised agricultural area. The highest proportions of organic area were recorded in Austria (11.0%), Italy (8.4%), the Czech Republic and Greece (both 7.2%) and the lowest in Malta (0.1%), Poland (0.6%) and Ireland (0.8%).

Looking at a longer time frame, for which EU15 data is available, the proportion of organic area in the total utilised agricultural area has increased from 1.8% in 1998 to 4.1% in 2005. In the EU25 in 2005, 6.1 million hectares of land were used as organic areas.

Italy (1.1 million hectares or 17% of the EU25 total) had the largest part of the organic area, followed by Germany and Spain (both 0.8 million hectares or 13%). On the occasion of the Green Week 2007, Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities, publishes a report on organic farming4 within the EU.

Less than 2% of all holdings are organic:
Overall in the EU25, 1.6% of all agricultural holdings were organic holdings. In nearly all the Member States of the EU25 in 2005, the average size of these organic holdings was larger than for all holdings: 39 hectares (ha) per organic holding, compared with 16 ha per holding on average.

The largest organic holdings were found in Slovakia (463 ha per holding), the Czech Republic (305 ha), Portugal (148 ha) and the United Kingdom (142 ha).

Areas under conversion vary greatly between Member States:
Organic areas include fullyconverted and under conversion areas2. Before being considered as fully converted, all areas need to have a period of time during which they are undergoing the conversion process.

The proportion of area under conversion in the total organic area varied among the Member States from less than 10% in Denmark (1%), the Netherlands (4%), Finland (8%) and Sweden (9%) to more than 80% in Malta (100%), Cyprus (87%) and Latvia (83%).

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