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Agriculture and rural development

EU Organic Awards

About the EU organic awards

Increases in organic production contribute significantly to reducing the use of chemical fertilisers, pesticides and antimicrobials and have positive effects on our climate, the environment, biodiversity and animal welfare. That is why organic production has been identified as playing a key role in achieving the objectives of the European Green Deal, the Farm to Fork strategy and the Biodiversity strategy. For this reason, the Commission has defined a target of 25% of EU agricultural land under organic farming by 2030 and a significant increase in organic aquaculture.

In support of that target, the Commission has adopted the Action Plan for the Development of Organic Production in March 2021, including the launch of annual awards recognising excellence in the organic value chain. These awards will be awarded for the second time in 2023.

Meet the winners of the 2022 organic awards.

EU Organic Awards logo

Award categories and awards

The EU organic awards scheme comprises 7 categories and 8 individual awards. They acknowledge different actors along the organic value chain, which developed an excellent, innovative, sustainable and inspiring project producing real added value for organic production and consumption.

Category 1: Best organic farmer (female) and Best organic farmer (male)

The objective of this award is to reward a farmer (one female and one male). This award is organised by COPA-COGECA and IFOAM Organics Europe.

Category 2: Best organic region

The objective of this award is to reward a region. This award is organised by the European Committee of the Regions.

Category 3: Best organic city

The objective of this award is to reward a city. This award is organised by European Committee of the Regions.

Category 4: Best organic “bio-district”

The objective of this award is to reward a “bio district”. This award is organised by the European Committee of the Regions.

Category 5: Best organic food processing SME

The objective of this award is to reward a Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) processing organic products. This award is organised by the European Economic and Social Committee.

Category 6: Best organic food retailer

The objective of this award is to reward an SME food retailer selling organic products. This award is organised by the European Economic and Social Committee.

Category 7: Best organic restaurant/food service

The objective of this award is to reward an SME restaurant/food service restaurant (standalone or part of a hotel) and/or food service (caterer or canteen) proposing organic certified references in their menu. This award is organised by the European Economic and Social Committee.

These awards are non-financial and will be handed on or around 23 September, which is EU Organic Day. For the second edition, the award ceremony will take place on 25 September 2023.

Reasons to apply

Do you want to contribute to the greater public awareness of organic production in the EU? Do you want to contribute to the greater affordability and/or accessibility of organic products in the EU? Have you developed and implemented, or are you still implementing, an excellent, innovative, sustainable and replicable project for this purpose? Do you want to make this project better known to the public?

If the answer to any of the above questions is 'yes', you should consider entering for the next edition of the EU organic awards. If you win, you will receive a non-financial recognition award and greater public visibility for your project. So whether you are:

  • an organic farmer
  • a city or region serving organic meals to patients or pupils or otherwise promoting organic production
  • a business in the organic food chain with a unique approach

- you should think about entering the EU organic awards.

Application, selection criteria

Application process

Applicants for the 2023 EU organic awards are asked to:

  • read the different sections of this website, in particular the eligibility criteria and the selection criteria;
  • choose the award category they wished to enter;
  • apply online from 25 March until 14 May 2023;
  • provide answers to closed guiding questions (some relating to the four principles of organic and the sustainability pillars), to help the jury to obtain more information about the applicants.

Organisers

The EU organic awards are jointly organised by the European Commission, the European Economic and Social Committee, the European Committee of the Region, COPA-COGECA  and IFOAM Organics Europe.

The jury deciding on the final winners comprised representatives of:

  • The European Commission,
  • The European Economic and Social Committee,
  • The European Committee of the Regions,
  • COPA-COGECA,
  • IFOAM Organics Europe,
  • The European Parliament and
  • The Council of the European Union.

Timeline

  1. 25 March 2023

    Launch of the application period for the awards

  2. 14 May 2023

    Deadline for the submission of applications: 14 May 2023, 23:59:59 CEST.

  3. June/July 2023

    Awards evaluation decision

  4. 25 September 2023

    Awards ceremony

Meet the winners of the 2022 edition

The awards ceremony was organised on the EU Organic day on 23 September 2022. The winners were invited to an event in Brussels to collect their awards. This event involved representatives of the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union, the European Economic and Social Committee, the Committee of the Regions, COPA-COGECA and IFOAM Organics Europe. Providing examples of best practices, the winners were able to explain their project to a broader public.

Watch the full recording of the inaugural EU organic awards ceremony that took place in Brussels, as one of a range of activities and events to mark EU organic day.

The Commission unveiled the eight winners of the first ever EU organic awards to celebrate excellence and innovation along the European organic value chain.

View the winners videos

Organic farming, aquaculture and food in the EU

Regulation (EU) 2018/848 states in recital 1 that “Organic production is an overall system of farm management and food production that combines best environmental and climate action practices, a high level of biodiversity, the preservation of natural resources and the application of high animal welfare standards and high production standards in line with the demand of a growing number of consumers for products produced using natural substances and processes”.

Organic production is increasing in the EU. In 2019, 8.5% of EU agricultural land was under organic farming. This equalled 13.8 million hectares, up from 9.5 million hectares in 2012, a 45.8% increase. The countries accounting for most of the EU agricultural land under organic farming were Spain (2.4 billion hectares, 17.4% of the EU total), France (2.2 billion hectares, 16.2% of the EU total), Italy (2.0 billion hectares, 14.5% of the total) and Germany (1.3 billion hectares, 9.4% of the EU total) as per Eurostat organic farming statistics.

Across the entire value chain, almost 344,000 organic producers and over 78,000 organic processors were active in the EU. Organic farmers benefit from the price premiums that organic products fetch on the market and the rapidly growing final consumer demand for organic products. In 2019, the EU market accounted for 38.8 billion euro in a global market of 106.4 billion euro, second after the US market accounting for 48.2 billion. Large markets in the EU are Germany (12.0 billion) euro and France (11.3 billion euro), as per FIBL statistics.

Per capita consumer expenditure on organic products is highest in Denmark (344 euro, equivalent to 12% of grocery shopping) and Luxembourg (264 euro, equivalent to 8% of grocery shopping), as per as per FIBL statistics.

Consumer awareness of the EU organic logo is increasing. In 2020, 56% of Eurobarometer survey respondents recognised the logo, compared to 27% in 2017. 80% of survey respondents believe that organic products are more environmentally friendly and respect higher animal welfare standards.

Documents

1 FEBRUARY 2023
EU Organic Awards – practical guide
English
(568.36 KB - PDF)
Download
1 FEBRUARY 2023
EU Organic Awards – general introduction
English
(696.14 KB - PDF)
Download
24 MARCH 2022
EU Organic Awards – privacy statement
English
(524.62 KB - PDF)
Download