British in need of organic feed ingredients
Shortages of organic feed ingredients have been predicted for several years
in the UK. Organic livestock producers are
now having to rely on imports.
Over the last 10 years, the number of organic livestock enterprises
in Britain has grown faster than organic arable production, resulting.
Despite record high prices, UK demand for
organic feed, especially organic poultry feed, is continuing to grow, says
Graham Loveday, organic sales manager for Marriages, a flour and feed miller
which sells 20% of its feed to organic producers.
Poor grain harvest
Europe's poor grain harvest last summer,
together with stricter EU standards, have raised prices for organic cereals to
new levels, with wheat selling at up to Â£280 ($550) per tonne.
The EU requires the organic content of animal
feed to increase from 80 to 85%, and 95% for organic ruminant feed.
"The biggest demand for organic feed is from
poultry producers responding to the growing popularity of organic chicken and
turkey with consumers," says Loveday.
Strong growth in US
In the US, the organic industry overall is
growing at the rate of 15-20% per year, according to Simmons Grain Company in
Salem, Ohio, as livestock producers are becoming increasingly aware of the
benefits of organic production and the premiums for organic products and
consumer demand is growing.
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