An October report from the USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) that was recently made public reveals that organic food sales and organic acreage have rebounded from recession declines and are showing positive growth in the sector overall. The USDA said while consumers "economized on their food purchases" during the recession decline between 2007 and 2009, and farmers chose to plant less organic acres, organic food sales and acreage have now returned to a growth pattern.
According to ERS, industry analysts have estimated that organic food sales totaled about $28 billion in 2012, only 4% of total at home food sales and an 11% increase from the year before. While USDA does not keep agency-vetted figures on organic food sales, ERS says organic produce and dairy are the top two food categories, totaling 43% and 15%, respectively, of organic food sales last year. Overall, certified organic cropland made up roughly 0.7% of U.S. cropland in 2011. Only a small percentage of the top U.S. field crops (corn (0.3%), soybeans (0.2%), and wheat (0.6%)) were grown under certified organic farming systems, the report says. To read more, click HERE.