Trends in the number of organic shops in Germany


The organic market in Germany has emerged from the crisis and all distribution channels are once again reporting growth in sales. Is all well that ends well? A number of organic retailers have lost their feathers in the turbulence of 2022 and 2023. Ecozept takes stock.

You can download the article here (in French).

Your opinion on the biodiversity found on your plate!



have you ever wondered about cultivated biodiversity found on your plate?

By cultivated biodiversity, we mean the diversity of plants and varieties grown, processed, marketed, and consumed. As part of the BIOVALUE public research project, we are looking to study and develop this biodiversity.

The opinion of European consumers is essential in fostering this diversity. Hence, we are reaching out to you with a brief questionnaire: it's anonymous, takes only a few minutes, and your responses will greatly assist us!

You can find the link here :

This survey is being conducted within the framework of BIOVALUE, a research project commissioned by the European Commission. The aim of BIOVALUE is to analyze and enhance cultivated biodiversity within agricultural and food value chains in Europe.

At the end of the questionnaire, you’ll receive a booklet of recipes made of uncommon crops and varieties (in English).

An eventful year that lays the foundations for a worry-free future?


At the start of 2023, the organic market in Germany was still experiencing sales losses, against a backdrop of high inflation rates. In the end, the market grew by 5 % in 2023. How has organic farming developed in Germany? Did consumer spending on organic food increase last year? And how are specialist organic retailers managing to differentiate themselves from conventional supermarkets? Ecozept takes a look – you can download the article published in the French trade journal “Biolinéaires“ here (in French).

Presentation by Ecozept at Biofach 2024


If you were unable to attend Biofach last week, you can download the slides from our presentation "Organic in out-of-home catering: Dream solution or pipe dream?" here.

Topics include, for example: What are the success factors for strengthening regional organic food in institutional catering? What distinguishes the French organic out-of-home catering market from the German market?

Ecozept on French television


What lessons can be learnt from the crises that the organic sector has experienced internationally? How have other countries responded to these drops in consumption in order to reduce the bar? Burkhard Schaer, Managing Director of Ecozept France, answers these questions on Biolinéaires TV.

Organic in out-of-home catering: Dream solution or pipe dream?


What are the success factors for strengthening regional organic food in institutional catering? What distinguishes the French organic out-of-home catering market from the German market and how can market players be successfully supported along the supply chain? What are the prerequisites for successful tendering procedures? These are the key topics that Ecozept will be discussing at Biofach 2024 on Tuesday, 13 February at 4pm. Meeting point HoReCa, Gastroforum Hall 3A (presentation in German).

Further training "Fit for organic catering" in January 2024


What are the characteristics of the out-of-home catering distribution channel? How can supplying Munich's catering establishments with regional organic products be a success?

At the online seminars "Fit for organic catering", experienced kitchen managers and organic suppliers will reveal important key points and will be available to answer questions. Participants will also have the opportunity to get in touch with regional wholesalers specialized in organic products. The events in January 2024 are intended for farms and processing companies as well as the food trade from the greater Munich area - already operating organically or in the process of conversion - who are interested in the (further) development of a regional organic range suitable for commercial kitchens and/or would like to enter into marketing partnerships.

Participation is free of charge. The events are organized by Ecozept in cooperation with its project partners Bioland and Naturland   on behalf of the Department for Climate and Environmental Protection (RKU) in the City of Munich. Find more about the project here.

FOODCoST: Launch of case studies on external costs in school catering


The project “FOODCoST” aims to develop tools, business models and strategies for measuring and evaluating external costs of food. Ecozept is leading a case study that deals with the external costs in school catering that have not yet been factored in. To this end, six canteens in France, Austria and Germany and a total of 16 standard meals were selected. Their environmental and social costs are currently being calculated by the Technical University of Nuremberg (THN).

The cities of Millau and Levignac-sur-Save in France have proposed "Spaghetti Bolognese" and "Chilli sin Carne" for calculation. Together with "rice pudding with raspberries", "Spaghetti Bolognese" is also the standard dish in the canteens in Tulln and Buchkirchen (Austria). In Nuremberg and Munich, the "actual" costs of "turkey gyros with tzatziki" and "beef goulash with wholemeal noodles" are calculated.

In the next step, alternative dishes with presumably lower follow-up costs will be developed and tested with the kitchen facilities on site. At the same time, the current nutritional recommendations in each country were analysed. This revealed considerable differences in the "specifications", for example with regard to the quantity and frequency of meat used.

FOODCoST (Food Costing and internalisation of externalities for System Transition) is a European research project which gathers 22 beneficiaries from 13 EU countries. It contributes to better internalise the impacts of food production, for example on climate, biodiversity, social and health externalities, in order to get them reflected in market prices.

Further information here and here.

There is another way - economics of alternative milk marketing


The processing of milk into cheese is proving to be the most economically promising marketing route for farms in saxony! With lower risks, a long shelf life and promising sales opportunities, this is considered economically viable not only for hard cheeses, but also for a certain proportion of semi-hard cheeses.

This finding comes from a market study conducted by Ecozept in cooperation with the Agrarmarkt Informations-Gesellschaft (AMI) and the Verband für handwerkliche Milchverarbeitung e. V. (VHM). Our aim was to demonstrate the current status and market potential of alternative milk marketing channels in order to secure the economic competitiveness of Saxon milk producers.

You can download the final report with further results and recommendations here and at this link (in German).

Bavaria: Contest for increasing sustainability in out-of-home catering


On September 4th, the contest “gut.gekocht.gewinnt“ was launched by the Competence Center for Nutrition (KErn) on behalf of the Bavarian State Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Forestry to promote more sustainability in community catering facilities in Bavaria. The aim is to reward exceptional ideas and concepts in out-of-home catering in terms of sustainability. The participants are evaluated by an independent jury of experts, of which Ecozept is also a member.

The competition is open to all Bavarian communal catering facilities that serve at least one hot lunch per day. Applications may be sent in until November 3rd, 2023. Any further information is available here.

The German organic market is slowly emerging from its recession


Organic sales are rising again in Germany, especially in supermarkets and discounters. One of the main contributing factors is that associations of organic producers are incresingly opening up to discounters, such as Aldi Süd with taking their private label “Nur nur Natur“ to trade, which is certified by “Naturland“. Where is the German organic market situated across Europe? What does “Bio+“ actually mean? Ecocept provides information in an article published in the French trade journal “Biolinéaires“, which can be downloaded here (in French).

"Kitchen meets region": contact exchange also successful its 2nd run


Just like at the first "speed dating" in March 2023, 23 supply companies and 18 kitchen facilities participated again in “Kitchen meets region” on April 19, 2023, almost bursting the hall at the Nockherberg. It also resulted in an enriching exchange due to the fact that some kitchens and supply companies were already participating for the second time and were thus able to deepen the contacts they had made at the first event. Initial trial deliveries of bio-regional products have already been established. On October 12 and November 16, 2023, Ecozept and its partners will organize two more events of their successful "contact exchange in a speed dating format”. Registration is now possible here.

"Küche trifft Region" (Kitchen meets region) is organized by Ecozept in cooperation with its project partners FIBL, Naturland, Bioland and the project office "Ökologisch Essen" (Ecological Food) as part of the mandate of the Department for Climate and Environmental Protection (RKU) of the City of Munich. The aim is to bring suppliers and kitchen managers of the City of Munich in contact in order to increase the share of regional organic food in Munich's catering facilities.

Organic still doing well in Germany


The crises of the last years have left their traces, the organic market in Germany decreased about 4 %. The discount supermarket chains however could increase their sales of organic products and want to increase them further. And the organic food shops? You can read more in the article of Ecozept in the French trade magazine “Bio Linéaires” which you can download here (in French).

LIFT-MOOC: Discover agroecology with fun!


With the completion of the EU research project "LIFT", the central instrument for knowledge transfer has now been put online: the MOOC - "Massive Open Online Course" - is a freely accessible platform which contains modules, case studies, webinars, games and forums around the topic "Introduction of sustainable agricultural production methods". The target group includes students and teachers as well as consultants and other stakeholders.

Those who would like to view the results of the four-year Horizon 2020 project in the form of a video will find what they are looking for at MOOC.

Via the "agriculture et forêt" tab of the agreen U  platform, one can find the course "Lift MOOC", under which the course contents are listed.

If you open the page via Google Chrome, you will get the website in the desired language and can also generate an English subtitle for the videos.

Further information can also be found on the project website:

Nous recrutons : Un(e) consultant(e) sénior "Marchés, filières et territoires"


Nous recherchons un nouveau collaborateur expérimenté (H/F) pour renforcer l’équipe « filières et marchés » basée à Montpellier.  Vous trouverez ici l'offre d'emploi détaillée.

Offre de stage à Montpellier


Nous cherchons un(e) chargé(e) d'études stagiaire "Marchés, filières et territoires". Vous trouverez ici l'offre de stage détaillée.

More ecological agriculture for the protection of drinking-water in north-west Germany


The water association of Oldenburg-Ostfriesland (OOWV) wants to advance organic agriculture in its area, which is characterized by intensive land use.

Ecozept has worked out an expert’s report in cooperation with FiBl Projekte GmBH, AMI and the competence center for organic agriculture Niedersachen (KÖN). They are pursuing a holistic approach which encompasses the support of agricultural companies as well as the sector of food processing.

The approach is being accompanied by an offer for further education and a communication strategy for the water supply company. In support of this, the development of regional water protection products from drinking water extraction areas can contribute to the visibility of the connection between organic farming and water protection. The results of the study can be read in detail on the OOWV website (in german).

Work aid for the awarding of public catering services: More organic and regional organic products in the public catering


The desire for more organic and regional products in the awarding of public catering services in Saxony (Germany) is continuously growing since many years. But how can those products be taken into account and being promoted by the public catering institutions?

To answer those questions, Ecozept, FiBL Projekte GmbH, and Prof. Dr. Christopher Zeiss conducted a study together.

The results are presented in a 60-page “Work aid for the awarding of public catering services” and summarized in a “Handout guideline” for public administration. Both documents are available for download here.

An article on the working aids can also be found on the Ökolandbau Portal.

High marketing potential for orchard meadows products


The local Landcare Association Freising (Landschaftspflegeverband) wants to promote the marketing and thus the use and preservation of orchard meadows in the administrative district of Freising.

Ecozept has developed a marketing concept for products from orchards in cooperation with other partners. A market analysis has been carried out, focusing on demand and sales potential for various product groups, such as organic apple juice. The concept aims to serve as a model for comparable regional marketing approaches throughout Bavaria.
The final report can be downloaded here.

German organic market at 2 speeds?


With sales growth of 12% in the first half of the year, the German organic market continues to grow very strongly in 2021, although the Corona year 2020 was already characterised by exceptionally strong growth.

However, growth is much lower in the specialised organic food trade. A two-speed market is emerging. An analysis by Ecozept for the French trade journal Bio Linéaires, here in the download area in French.

Sell differently: trends and opportunities


From Wednesday the 13th of October 2021 until Friday the 15th of October, the 10th meeting of the Bundesverband der Regionalbewegungen (national federation of regional movements) took place in Nauen (Brandenburg - Germany). During the forum “canteen is looking for region”, Ecozept presented legal aspects of public tenders for catering services.

Ecozept also participated in a “knowledge market” with the topic “corporative selling solutions”. The studies „InnoDirekt“ and „alternatives in selling milk(products) in Saxony (Germany)“ were presented as a poster, which can be found in our download area under the title "Sell differently: trends and opportunities".

Project profile "Pasture city Augsburg": supporting the marketing of lamb meat


In order to develop and maintain grazing activities in the “Lech”- river areas near Augsburg (Bavaria), the Landschaftspflegeverband Stadt Augsburg e.V. (local landcare association) supports local shepherds.

The project profile (which can be found in our download area) provides information about the economic operators, the current brand users, the sold number of animals according to their marketing channels as well as the retail outlets and the communication medias.

Study on organic field crops in the EU and in the main non-member countries


In collaboration with AND International, we conducted a study on organic field crops in the world on behalf of the Agence Bio at the international level.

We have thus identified the volumes of production, uses by primary processing operators and trade as well as the prices of 11 species of cereals, oilseeds and protein crops between 2016 and 2020 in 18 countries (12 Member States and 6 third countries). We have also proposed several production projections to 2025.

The synthesis of this study is available in French and in English on our website following this link.

You will also find the synthesis in French as well as our presentation of the results on the website of the Agence Bio following this link.

GLOPACK expert survey about innovative sustainable food packaging


Finding optimized and sustainable food packaging solutions is one of the daily challenges of the food sector. The GLOPACK project ( develops several packaging innovations: biobased and home-compostable packaging from agricultural and food waste, active packaging, intelligent packaging and a software for decision-making in packaging.

Ecozept is conducting an expert survey about future food packaging solutions in the scope of the GLOPACK project.

The topics of the interview include the presentation of the GLOPACK innovations, experts’ assessment of its market potential and success factors for introducing innovations in food packaging.

As food packaging experts, please help the future food packaging solutions to emerge and get top-insights into the development by answering to our survey until 13 August 2021!

Participation in the survey takes 30-40 minutes.

To reach the survey, click here.

Please also share this invitation amongst your network in the packaging sector. Thanks for your support!

Experts Workshop „More organic and regional products in communal catering in Saxony.”


The Saxon Ministry of Agriculture (SMEKUL) is inviting participants to three workshops on 14, 15 and 16 July in Dresden, Chemnitz and Leipzig to demonstrate practical options for increasing the use of regional and organic-regional products in communal catering and to provide contracting authorities with legally sound recommendations for the preparation and implementation of the award procedure. Ecozept organises these workshops in cooperation with FiBL Projekte GmbH and Prof. Dr. Christopher Zeiss.

They are intended to provide valuable content to develop a good practice guidance   for the consideration of more regional and organic products in the awarding of public sector catering services in Saxony. Invited are actors of the different catering sectors education, care and administration.

Interested parties please contact

Are Certified Supply Chains More Socially Sustainable? A Bargaining Power Analysis


he EU-horizon 2020 project “Strength2Food” analyses Food Quality Schemes (FQS: organic and geographical indication products). Ecozept is part of the consortium and co-author of the following paper which explores the social sustainability advantage of FQS through the lens of supply chains’ bargaining power (BP) distribution. .

Therefore an indicator has been elaborated, synthesizing different sources underlying BP (competition-based, transactional, institutional) and counting two dimensions (fair BP distribution and adaptation capacity). Applied to 18 FQS supply chains and corresponding reference, the results show, that FQS perform better than their reference products on both dimension.

Please find the results in our download-area.

New flyer: Sustainable use of orchard meadows in the administrative district of Freising


Protect orchards with every glass of organic apple juice!

As a part of the pilot project for the preservation and planting of orchard meadows in the Archdiocese of Munich / Freising, Ecozept has developed an information leaflet on the sustainable use of orchard meadows in cooperation with the landscape planning office Ruhland and the Local Landcare Association Freising.

The leaflet presents the project goals, underlines the ecological value of orchard meadows, explains sustainable use and ask meadow managers for their participation in the project. So far, ten parishes from the diocese have already shown interest!

The flyer is available in the download area

LIFT: Case study results from Europe and the Simssee region (Bavaria)


After another project year, valuable results on organic farm types have been collected through several international workshops and surveys with farmers in 12 European countries. The main results are summarized in the 3rd LIFT newsletter, which is available in our download section.

One of the case studies examined in LIFT is the Simssee region (Bavaria, Germany). First results of our surveys with farmers show: agro-ecological practices must also be economically viable! These results are also available (in German language) in our download section.

Further information on the projects’ homepage.

Promoting alternative ways of marketing milk in Saxony


What are alternatives for Saxony farmers on the existing conventional production and marketing of milk? What marketing channels are available beyond the large dairy factories and what product qualities are in demand? From August 2020 till January 2021, AMI Ltd and Ecozept Deutschland GbR were investigating these questions on behalf of the Saxony State Office for Environment, Agriculture and Geology (Landesamt für Umwelt, Landwirtschaft und Geologie, LfULG). In connection to the ongoing structural change in the Saxony dairy industry, the study showed ways to secure the performance and competitiveness of the Saxony dairy farms. The research revealed around 300 market actors with alternative forms of marketing of milk in Saxony. In addition to the data analysis, a two-stage survey among production, processing, trade and association representatives was conducted in autumn 2020.

The respondents attribute a high development potential to most of these alternative distribution channels, especially on-farm processing with farm-gate sale. However, the prerequisites are authentic customer communication and customer proximity, an adapted set of funding instruments and access to well-trained specialists. Many producers would like to see more appreciation for their work and the products they produce - not only from the consumers, but also form politics and administration.

At the end of February 2021, the results were presented through an online event. A poster of the results is available in our download section. Soon the complete report will be available on the media portal of the Saxony State Office .

More organic and regional products in public catering is possible!


In cooperation with FiBL Projekte GmbH and Prof. Christopher Zeiss, Ecozept creates a good practice guidance for the consideration of more organic and regional products in the awarding of public catering services in Saxony from April 2021.

These guidelines are part of the state-wide strategy pursued by the Ministry of Agriculture to promote regional organic value chains through increased demand from public collective catering. The results are expected by the end of 2021.

The problem with packaging


What can we expect from alternatives to plastics made from fossil-based raw materials?

In the trade journal BioPress we present various solutions for the prevention of plastic waste. Based on a survey of experts for the EU project GLOPACK, the existing challenges of marketable bioplastics are highlighted.

In addition, the home-compostable packaging solutions of the GLOPACK project are presented, which consist of corn cobs or residues from juice production that are GMO-free and do not compete with food production. The article is available free of charge in our download-section and at the website of BioPress.

Biofach 2021: Between unpacked products and the flood of plastics - status quo & perspectives of packaging in industry, research and policies


The topic of packaging is increasingly getting into the focus of companies, especially due to the increased awareness of consumers as well as European and national circular economy strategies and the European Green Deal. The panel gives an overview of the topic from protective function of packaging to future solutions. The speakers will participate in the discussion on where benchmarks are and how the organic sector is positioning its activities.

Impulses from Carolin Hauser, Jan Niessen (Technische Hochschule Nürnberg), Ramona Schöll (Student Universität Oldenburg), Denise Gider (Ecozept)

Between unpacked products and the flood of plastics - status quo & perspectives of packaging in industry, research and policies, Wednesday, 17th Feb, 2-2:45 pm, Stream 2

Programme overview Biofach eSPECIAL

Biofach 2021: Impulses for more organic: Strengths and weaknesses of current organic action plans in Germany and the EU


In recent years, numerous federal states in Germany and EU member states have set a concrete growth target for the organic food sector. Organic action plans are an important instrument for strengthening the sector. What are the strengths and weaknesses of the action plans in Germany and the EU? And are the efforts made so far sufficient to achieve the growth targets? Do they fit with current and potential trends for supply and demand?

Insights from Nic Lampkin, Jürn Sanders (Thünen Institut) and from Burkhard Schaer (Ecozept)

Impulses for more organic: Strengths and weaknesses of current organic action plans in Germany and the EU, WED, 17th Feb, 3-3:45 pm; Stream 5

Biofach 2021: Transparency, proximity & prosuming: new ways of marketing organic products


The Corona crisis has raised public awareness of the importance of short supply routes. Consumers are placing additional expectations on marketing. Concrete practical examples will be used to show which approaches to communication and price transparency are promising.

What can the organic food trade learn from this? What kind of cooperations are possible? You can expect current figures on the importance of direct marketing of organic products as well as field reports from representatives of "Regiothek", "Marktschwärmer", "Du bist hier der Chef!" and Foodhub München e.V.

We are organising the online panel discussion in cooperation with AMI, FIBL & Bioland on Wednesday 17.2.2021 from 11:00-11:45 as part of this year's Biofach.

Registration here

Organic products in French out-of-home catering


In the current issue of the trade journal BioPress, we report on political desires and market economy realities in increasing the share of organic products in French out-of-home catering.

We look at government targets and promotion instruments and identify success factors in supporting market players. The article is available free of charge in our download-section and at BioPress

Impact of Covid-19 on the French organic food trade


In cooperation with the French trade magazine Biolinéaires and the sector associations Natexbio and Synadis, Ecozept conducted a survey in the French organic food trade on the effects and reactions of the Corona crisis. More than 900 shops participated in the online survey at the end of March!

The current issue of Biolinéaires (N° 89 - May 2020) presents the main findings of this study. We will send a summary in German to on request.

Moselle project: Water protection project in Bouzonvillois Trois Frontières (France) successfully completed


Ecozept and its partners "Bio en Grand Est" and "Envilys" have presented a feasibility study for agricultural value chains that promote water conservation in the Bouzonvillois Trois Frontières region. The area is located in the east of France directly on the border with Luxembourg and Germany. The action plan proposed in the feasibility study was designed together with regional stakeholders and economic actors.

Key areas of action include: Developing production and supply chains for the crop alfalfa, building local market opportunities for crops for diversification, improving production and markets for organic food and marketing support for regional pasture-raised meat. Our action plan will be integrated into the municipality's agricultural policy in the coming weeks. Now is the time to implement the proposed measures.

Innodirekt: Final report available


The study on innovative forms of direct marketing carried out by Ecozept and mareg (markt & regio) is now freely available under Organic Eprints: : "New and innovative direct selling concepts for agricultural products – state of the art, best-practice examples and analysis of consumer expectations and recommendations for stakeholders".

The study as well as further documents such as presentations and an information sheet can also be downloaded in our download area.