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BELGIUM

Introduction

The first conversions from conventional to organic farming took place during the 1960s, but significant numbers of farmers only began organic farming in the last ten years or so.

Most organic farmers are found in the Walloon Region, where conventional farming in the hilly region is already extensive (mostly pastures for dairy production), enabling farmers to be certified organically without major changes in their farming practices. Conventional agricultural practices in the northern part of the country, the Flanders Region, are rather intensive, especially in the case of production of fruit and vegetables. Although fewer farmers have converted to organic farming so far in this part of the country, a recent policy adjustment, in which subsidies per hectare for organic vegetable production more than tripled in Belgium, is expected to lead to a significant increase in the number of organic farmers in the Flanders Region over the next few years.

In 1999, the number of organic farmers was 550 (Table 1), while it increased to 636 during the year 2000 (an increase of almost 16 percent) (Ministry of Agriculture, 2001). Besides these organic farmers, 571 certified organic enterprises are found: 529 wholesalers, packers, distributors, etc. with the remaining being importers (42).

Despite the growth rate observed during the last decade (average annual growth rate of about 20 percent), organic farming is still a small sector in Belgium, accounting for about 1 percent of total area under agricultural production.

Table 1: Number of (organic) farms per region and percentage of total farms (1999)


Flanders Region

Walloon Region

Belgium (total)

Total number of farms

42 289

21 558

63 848

Number of organic farms

172

378

550

Percentage

0.41

1.75

0.86

Source: Heuschen, 2000

During the year 2000, the total area under organic production increased from 18 515 hectares to 20 663 hectares (an increase of almost 12 percent). The highest growth was in organic pasture land. The area under organic horticultural production (including flowers) accounts for 3.6 percent of the total organic surface (751 hectares (Table 2)) (Ministry of Agriculture, 2001).

Table 2: Area under organic production (including under conversion) and percentage increase, by region (2000)


Total organic agriculture(including pastures)

Of which organic horticulture(including flowers)

Area (ha)

Increase in %(compared with1999 figure)

Area (ha)

Increase in %(compared with1999 figure)

Walloon Region

16 905

6.8

205

34.6

Flanders Region

3 758

43.5

546

12.6

Belgium Total

20 663

11.4

751

17.9

Source: Ministry of Agriculture, 2001.

1. Organic farming in Belgium

The main part of the certified organic area is dedicated to pastures for dairy farming (about 75 percent). The second main usage is cereal production (9 percent of total organic area). Organic production of fruit and vegetables is modest (3 percent), and is mostly found in the Flanders Region. The distribution of the area under organic fruit and vegetable production per region is given in Table 3 (1999).

Table 3: Fruit and vegetable area (in conversion, organic and cumulated) per region, 1999

Year 1999

In conversion (ha)

Organic (ha)

Cumulated (ha)

Flanders Region

Fruits

55.5

139.4

194.9

Vegetables

32.1

257.1

289.2

Walloon Region

Fruits

12.4

47.6

60.0

Vegetables

1.4

66.6

68.0

TOTAL

Fruits and vegetables

101.4

510.7

612.1

Source: Ministry of Agriculture, 2001.

The most common products among vegetables are potatoes, carrots, cabbage and onions, while apple is the main organic fruit produced, followed at a distance by pears. Quantities per product could not been obtained.

1.1 Governmental policy on organic farming

In Belgium, Council Regulation (EEC) No. 2092/91 applies for organic farmers, processors, traders, etc. The state authority for organic farming is the Ministry of Agriculture (Direction Générale 4 (for plant production) and Direction Générale 5 (for animal production)). The Ministry recognises two inspection bodies: Blik and Ecocert. Both are accredited according to EN 45005 and EN 45011.

Farmers and processors who meet the private standards of Biogarantie and Nature & Progrès (in addition to the official standards for organic production) may use the labels Biogarantie® (mainly used in the Flanders Region) and Nature & Progrès (used in the Walloon Region, see Figure 1) (Heuschen, 2000).


Figure 1: The logos of Nature & Progrès and Biogarantie


Direct support for organic farmers has been granted since 1994 by the Belgian Government. In 2001, the annual subsidy per hectare for vegetable production more than tripled, from €300 per hectare to €930 (during the first two years of conversion, average figure) (see Table 4). The other support amounts have not been changed.

Table 4: Government support per hectare (2001)

Land use

1st and 2nd year of conversion (in €)

Following 3 years (year3-5) (in €)

Annual crops eligible for arable area payment (such as cereals and oilseeds)

180.52

111.55

Other annual crops

300.87

223.10

Pastures

297.47

173.52

Vegetable crops

1st year: 991.57

743.68


2nd year: 867.63


Perennial crops (fruit trees)

842.46

743.68

Source: Ministry of Agriculture (2001).

Other state support activities include co-financing of two research centres for organic agriculture: (i) Proefcentrum voor de biologische teelt (PCBT) (in the Flanders Region); and (ii) Centre technique pour le développement de l’agriculture et de l’horticulture biologique (CEB) (in the Walloon Region). These centres concentrate on field experiments of organic agriculture.

1.2 Production constraints

As the above has made clear, despite remarkable growth figures over the last years, organic farming in Belgium still represents only one percent of total agricultural production. In the northern Flanders Region intensive conventional production methods require a major change in farm management if converted to organic farming. The subsidy per hectare supported by the Belgian Government has not been sufficient to attract many farmers. In 2001 the premium per hectare for vegetable production more than tripled. It is now expected that also the northern part of the country will become more organic.

However, organic production lags behind demand. Bearing in mind the conversion period of three years, it will not be before 2004 that national production of organic vegetables could catch up with demand. Therefore, a significant share of Belgian organic vegetable consumption is likely to continue to be imported.

One problem identified by various market operators is the lack of ‘organic spirit’ among farmers. Many of the farmers interested in conversion are said to be interested in the level of the subsidy per hectare only, instead of seriously committing themselves to other farming practices. Many see an attractive income alternative for the short term, but do not look at the longer term. This observed lack of commitment might result in a large number of newly converted farmers not continuing organic farming after a few years.

2. The Belgian market for organic fruit and vegetables

The total value of organic sales in Belgium are estimated at BF6 billion (2000), of which about one quarter is organic fruit and vegetable sales.

2.1 Sales of organic fruit and vegetables in value and volume

Although organic products have been sold on farms and in some specialized organic shops since the first farmers started producing organically in the 1960s, the awareness of most consumers of the availability of organic fruit and vegetables started once the main supermarket chains included these products in their assortment, about 10 years ago. The first retailer to carry organic products was Delhaize, which started in 1989, followed by Colruyt and GB (now owned by French retailer Carrefour) in 1991. Those supermarkets requested the organic products to be (at least) of the same quality as non-organic products, not accepting any inferior physical appearance of the product. Moreover, the taste of the organic products had to be as good (or better) compared to the conventional products.

Initially, only a few products were displayed, namely those readily available after the domestic production season (mostly vegetables with a longer shelf life, such as potatoes, carrots and onions). Gradually, over the last 10 years, more and more products and varieties have been included, and the availability throughout the year (including imports during the off-season period) has increased, resulting in a current annual supply of over 50 fresh fruits and vegetables. However, the initial products mentioned above (potatoes, carrots, onions) remain the ones with the highest sales volumes.

The strongest growth of the Belgian organic market has been observed in the second half of the 1990s, especially during the last three years (1998-2000). Fuelled by major food scares, including the dioxin crisis that hit Belgium hard, the organic market boomed. Immediately after the outbreak of the dioxin crises in 1999, in which high levels of dioxin and other toxics were found first in chicken meat and eggs and later in other foodstuffs as well, organic sales were up 80 percent from the preceding year. Average annual growth rates of 50 percent were observed during the 1998-2000 period.

No statistical data on processing and marketing of organic products, or on their development, is available (Heuschen, 2000). Therefore, what follows is based on information obtained through face-to-face and telephone interviews with traders and retailers.

Total sales of organic fruit and vegetables in 2000 were estimated at BF1.5 billion (€37.2 million). This is a rather reliable estimate since most informants, both at wholesale and retail level, confirmed this figure. Total volume is estimated at around 15 000 tonnes, of which the major part (70-80 percent) is vegetables (locally grown or imported from nearby countries such as the Netherlands or France). The major sales outlet is supermarkets, at some distance followed by specialized organic shops, and lastly by other distribution channels (see section 2.3).

The main products include (in decreasing order of magnitude): potatoes, apples, onions, carrots, cabbage (red and white), tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, bananas, and kiwi, among others (see Table 5).

2.2 Average prices at retail level

Figures on prices at retail level and premiums over conventional products are difficult to obtain, and vary widely among different products and during different seasons throughout the year. However, anecdotal information obtained from market sources and some non-representative samples obtained by the author, suggest that the average price premium ranges between 30 and 50 percent over conventional products, with exceptions beyond that range. These observations confirm earlier assessments of price premiums in Belgium (Michelsen et al, 1999) in which premiums for vegetables were estimated at 40 percent above the conventional price, and for fruits at 50 percent.

Table 5: Market for organic fruit and vegetables by product

Product

Quantity (in tonnes)

Vegetables

Potatoes

1 600 - 1 700

Onions

1 100 - 1 200

Cabbage (white/red)

850 - 900

Cauliflower

700 - 750

Broccoli

800 - 850

Carrots

1 000 - 1 100

Leek

450 - 500

Celery

350 - 400

Lettuce

500 - 550

Cucumber

450 - 500

Tomatoes

750 - 800

Peppers

650 - 700

Other

n.a.

Fruits

Apples

1 350 - 1 400

Bananas

800 - 850

Kiwi

650 - 700

Oranges

550 - 600

Berries

200 -225

Pears

850 - 900

Other

n.a.

TOTAL

14 000 - 15 500

Source: Author calculations based on information obtained from market sources.

During some of the interviews it was felt that on average the price premiums have gone down over the last ten years. Many expressed the expectation that, in view of the increasing market size and the increasing number of organic producers, wholesalers and outlets, the decline in price differences between organic and conventional products was likely to continue during the forthcoming years.

2.3 Distribution channels

Distribution channels are generally short: it takes only a few handlers to get the product from the field (or import harbour) to the final sales outlet. Two wholesalers (Biofresh and Biomarché) account for an estimated 70-80 percent of all wholesales of fresh organic fruit and vegetables. Biofresh, which besides organic fresh fruit and vegetables trades in other fresh products such as dairy products, meat and vegetarian specialities, supplies only specialized shops (no supermarkets). Out of the total 700 of these outlets, over 50 percent are supplied by Biofresh.

Biomarché, specialized in fruit and vegetables, is the only supplier of Delhaize, a supermarket chain. Biomarché has some packaging lines, where the organic products which are bought in bulk, are packed in bags, nets and trays (legislation requires organic products sold in outlets where also conventional products are available to be packed separately). Other distributors include Brava (a cooperative with about 50 farmers under contract) and some small companies.

Figure 2: The Belgian organic market for fruit and vegetables

Source: Author’s calculations based on information obtained from market sources

In 2000, an estimated 60-70 percent of all organic fruit and vegetables was sold in supermarket chains (almost 10 000 tonnes with an estimated value of €24 million or BF975 million, see Figure 2). The major part of this is sold by Delhaize, which accounts for an estimated 30 percent of total organic fruit and vegetables sold in Belgium. The other two main supermarket chains selling organic products are GB and Colruyt. These three supermarket chains have their own organic brands, of which the logos are shown in Figure 3.


Figure 3: the bio-brands of supermarket chains Delhaize, Colruyt and GB (Carrefour)

Sources: www.delhaize-le-lion.be, www.colruyt.be and www.gb.be

An estimated 25 percent of organic fruit and vegetables is sold in specialized shops (3 750 tonnes with an estimated value of €9.3 million or BF375 million). The remaining are farm sales, subscription schemes, weekly markets and so-called ‘food-teams’ (groups of consumers, mostly neighbours, buying collectively organic products).

New in Belgium is the ‘organic supermarket’, which only sells organic products. In March 2001 the first organic supermarket called ‘Bio Square’ was opened in Uckel, an economically wealthier neighbourhood of Brussels. The relatively small shop (120 m2), which operates under the logo of Delhaize, is expected to be the first in a series of five fully organic outlets, to be operational before the end of 2002. At the time of writing of this report (mid 2001), Bio Square has been open for about four months, and sales are said to be four to five times higher than expected. The main problem faced is supply to the shop, i.e. logistics. Another supermarket chain, Colruyt, is said to have a similar initiative forthcoming.

2.4 Consumer attitudes

The profile of organic consumers has not yet been studied (Heuschen, 2000); at least no studies are publicly available. However, in an issue of BioVisie (Blivo, 2000), the quarterly magazine of the organic sector in the Flanders Region, two questionnaires concerning organic food products (not just fruit and vegetables!) are quoted. Although the outcomes of the research does not necessarily fully reflect the attitude of all Belgian consumers towards organic products (respectively 1 000 and 750 persons replied), the results give some useful indications.

The report concludes that it is a likely that the number of organic clients is not increasing very fast, and that the market growth comes mostly from more purchases per organic consumer.

Anecdotal information obtained from market sources suggest that the typical organic consumer belongs to the higher educated, higher income strata, often having young children. It is no coincidence that the new Delhaize organic supermarket ‘Bio Square’ is situated in Uckel, an economically wealthier neighbourhood of Brussels, where many of these typical organic consumers live.

2.5 Trends

The market has been growing at growth rates of up to 50 percent over the last few years. This growth, fuelled by food scares in conventional products, is realized through a combination of higher amounts per organic products sold (partly thanks through import based year-round supply) as well as the introduction of new organic varieties.

New products that recently have been launched in the organic market, include cherry tomatoes (imported from Israel and Italy), red pomelo and vacuum packed maize and red beet, among others.

Monthly magazines published by the main supermarkets dedicate more and more space to organic food. In order to enhance and strengthen awareness among consumers on organic products, these magazines contain information about new products, explanations about what the organic labels stand for, and provide recipes for organic cooking. Some specialized organic shops have joined forces in this ‘consumer-education’ and jointly print similar brochures.

Another trend observed is the use of biodegradable packaging for many organic products (see Figure 4). (Poirier, 1999.)


Figure 4: Biodegradable packaging: an extra selling point for the
environmentally-conscious organic food consumer


Source: www.colruyt.be

2.6 Main constraints to market development

It is expected that the organic market will continue to expand rapidly, and demand will continue to surpass domestic supply. The major food scares that have hit the European continent in general and Belgium in particular over the last few years have permanently eroded confidence in conventional products among groups of consumers.

However, as referred to in paragraph 2.3, about half of the respondents to a questionnaire are not familiar with the Biogarantie label and over 55 percent of the surveyed persons do not recognize an organic product. Moreover, more than 60 percent consider organic products too expensive. Based on this information it seems valid to conclude that the fast growth of organic sales in Belgium over the last years is the result of high volumes bought by one group of consumers, whereas other groups of consumers are not (yet) familiar with organic products and/or do not buy these due to various reasons, among which the significant price difference between organic and conventional fruit and vegetables is the overriding argument.

Therefore, constraints to further market development include a combination of lack of awareness among certain groups of consumers and the price difference between organic and conventional products. Supermarket chains are poised to take a leading role in consumer education through their monthly magazines, but also a promotional campaign at national level could enhance consumer awareness of organic products and reduce the current lack of knowledge and misunderstanding.

Moreover, the noted shortage in supply of organic fruit and vegetables, due to the low domestic production, has a slackening influence on further market growth. To what extent the low domestic supply provides opportunities for organic exporting countries, in particular developing countries, to meet Belgian organic demand, will be analyzed in Section 3.

3. Imports of organic fruit and vegetables

3.1 Market access

For imports of organic fruit and vegetables into Belgium, Council Regulation (EEC) No. 2092/91 applies. However, organic certification is only one of the requirements needed to enter the market. As has become evident in the previous section, supermarket chains (in Belgium by far the leading outlet for sales of organic fruit and vegetables) require high product standards as they do not accept any inferior quality or taste. Therefore, post-harvest handling and transport are key, and must ensure that the product reaches the consumer in top quality.

3.2 Total imports of organic fruit and vegetables

As in most other countries where market surveys have been carried out for this publication, no official data on imports of organic fruit and vegetables exist in Belgium.

In February 2001, a new project with the title "Bio-theek" was started, coordinated by BioForum, the Belgian umbrella organization for the organic sector. The objective of the project is to collect and disseminate for free the most recent data available on production, consumption, imports and exports of organic products. However, since the information is not expected to be available before early 2002, what follows in this section is an analysis of imports of organic fruit and vegetables based on interviews with importers and traders.

During the analysis, a wide range of uncertainties and other difficulties were faced, which, include, among others:

These points, combined with a certain reluctance among some traders and importers to provide detailed information, imply that this section is based on rough estimates. Therefore, caution should prevail when drawing conclusions based on the information provided.

Table 6 gives estimated ranges of quantities of organic fruit and vegetable imports (year 2000), as well as the main countries of origin. For some products imports account for 50 percent of supply (e.g. for potatoes, onions, carrots, apples, pears, etc.), while for other products the imported share is between 70 and 80 percent (e.g. broccoli, celery, tomatoes). Import rates for fruits such as kiwi, oranges and banana, etc., are naturally 100 percent, as no domestic production exists.

Total imports are estimated to range between 10 000 and 11 000 tonnes, or about two-thirds of all organic fruit and vegetables consumed domestically.

Table 6: Imports of organic fruit and vegetables by product (year 2000)

Product

Quantity (in tonnes)

Countries of origin

Vegetables

Potatoes

800 - 850

Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Egypt

Onions

550 - 600

Netherlands, France, Italy, Spain

Cabbage (white/red)

650 - 675

Netherlands, France,

Cauliflower

500 - 550

Netherlands, Italy, France, Spain

Broccoli

575 - 625

Netherlands, Italy, Spain

Carrots

500 - 550

Netherlands, France, Spain

Leek

225 - 275

Italy, Spain, France

Celery

300 - 350

Italy, Spain, France,

Lettuce

375 - 425

Italy, Spain, France,

Cucumber

450 - 500

Netherlands,

Tomatoes

600 - 650

Italy, Spain, Morocco, Israel

Peppers

600 - 650

Netherlands, Spain, Morocco

Garlic

75 - 100

Argentina

Asparagus

< 25

Argentina

Other

n.a.

n.a.

Fruits

Apples

650 - 700

Netherlands, Argentina, New Zealand

Bananas

800 - 850

Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, Burundi, Rwanda

Kiwi

650 - 700

Italy, New Zealand

Oranges

550 - 600

Spain, Italy, Israel

Berries

150 - 175

France, Italy, Spain

Pears

500 - 550

Netherlands, Argentina, New Zealand

Other

n.a.

n.a.

TOTAL

10 000 - 11 000

-

Source: Author’s calculations based on information obtained from market sources.

Imports from countries outside the EC other than those listed in Article 11 of Council Regulation (EEC) No. 2092/91, are registered at the Ministry of Agriculture. The information describes the imported product, the country of origin and the certification bodies involved, but does not provide quantitative information (Table 7).

Table 7: Imports of fresh organic fruits and vegetables from third countries in 2000

Product

Country of origin

Control body in third country

Control body in Belgium

Grapefruit

South Africa

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Bananas

Colombia

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Peru

BCS-Öko Garantie

Ecocert Belgium

Ecuador

Q.A.I

Blik vzw

Dominican Republic

BCS - Ökogarantie

Blik vzw

Burundi

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Rwanda

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Apples (organic and in conversion)

New Zealand

S.G.S-Netherlands

Blik vzw

Pineapple

Togo

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Avocados

Burundi/South Africa/Mexico

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Passion fruit

Burundi

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Papayas

Burundi

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Mango

Rwanda/South Africa/Mexico

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Zucchini

Burundi

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Egg-plant

Burundi

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Leek

Burundi

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Asparagus

Burundi

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Plums

South Africa

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Lime

Mexico

Ecocert International

Ecocert Belgium

Source: Ministry of Agriculture, 2001 and market sources.

3.3 Re-exports

Re-exports of organic fruit and vegetables do exist in several western European countries, including France, the Netherlands and Belgium. Belgium imports a number of products from France and the Netherlands, and it is therefore difficult to verify, especially for temperate zone products, if imports into Belgium consist of re-exports from these countries, or if these products are produced in France or the Netherlands.

An example of the difficulty to analyse trade-flows include kiwifruit imported into Belgium. Information provided by the Ministry of Agriculture in Belgium, the State Authority responsible for import licenses for organic products from countries other than those listed in Article 11 (as described in Council Regulation (EEC) 2092/91), does not mention any imports of organic kiwi from New Zealand, although the fruit is readily available on the market.

Zespri, a New Zealand kiwi producer and importer into Belgium, reports that it sells about one-fifth of their organic kiwis in the Netherlands, while one Belgium wholesaler stated that they buy ‘all non-EC imports’ from Eosta, an organic wholesaler in the Netherlands. Therefore, it seems likely that part of the New Zealand kiwi fruit is, through the Belgium offices of New Zealand producers/importers, imported into the Netherlands, from where it continues its journey (back) to Belgium. The fruit from New Zealand is finally consumed in Belgium, but no import licenses concerning imports from non-Article 11 countries are registered at the Ministry of Agriculture in Belgium.

3.4 Main importers

Some of the main importers include the wholesale companies Biofresh and Biomarché (see section 2). Other major importers include foreign companies such as Zespri (New Zealand), Enzafruit (New Zealand) and Capespan (South Africa). Although based in Belgium, their activities include all major European markets. De Grieck and Havenbedrijf Noord are among the bigger domestic importers. Contact details of the main importers are provided in Annex I.

3.5 Constraints to import growth

At first sight, no major constraints to imports exist. Demand in the Belgium organic market is expected to continue to outgrow domestic supply and therefore imports are likely to keep their prominent position in the supply of organic fruit and vegetables. Additionally, some traders referred to the ongoing discussion on the energy balance per organic product (all energy used during the lifecycle of the product: production, transport, storage, cooling, etc.) and noted that this does not necessarily discriminate against imported products. Some market sources indicated a clear preference for fresh (off-season) organic products shipped in from countries far away over domestically produced products which are stored for some months in cooled warehouses (‘Better a fresh pear from the southern hemisphere, than a domestic pear which has been stored for 4 months’).

Despite the high percentages of imported organic fruit and vegetables, one should note that the main part of imports originates from other European countries. Therefore, prospects for third countries to export to the Belgian market do exist, but for certain products and during certain months face strong competition from European organic supply.

4. Conclusions and market opportunities for developing countries

The major food scares that have hit the European continent in general and Belgium in particular over the last few years have permanently eroded confidence in conventional products among groups of consumers, resulting in fast growth of the organic horticultural market over the last three years, with annual growth rates of 50 percent. Demand for organic fruit and vegetables in Belgium has outgrown domestic supply, resulting in significant imports over the past decade. A relatively small number of Belgian farmers have converted away from conventional farming practices so far and although a recent policy adjustment, in which subsidies per hectare for organic vegetable production more than tripled, is expected to lead to an increase in domestic organic supply, imports are likely to remain the main source of fresh organic fruit and vegetables. Despite the generally high percentage of organic imports in Belgium, most of these products are imported from other European countries, such as the Netherlands, France, Italy and Spain. Imports from outside the EC are much smaller, and include countries like Morocco, Egypt, Israel, New Zealand, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, Burundi and Rwanda, among others.

The best commercial prospects for developing countries’ organic horticultural exports to Belgium are seen for off-season temperate products as well as for exotic fruits.

It should be stressed that the combination of organic certification requirements, the controls involved, and the high quality requirements of the product’s taste and physical appearance make professional post-harvest handling, storage and transport key features, in order to succeed in delivering fresh organic products in top condition to the Belgian consumer.

References

Biogarantie (2000), Liste des operateurs par code postal, Biogarantie, St. Joris Weert, November 2000

Blivo (2000a), BioVisie, Quaterly magazine, various issues (September 1999, December 1999, March 2000, October 2000 and December 2000), Blivo, Berchem, 1999 and 2000

Blivo (2000b), Evolutie biologische landbouw, Blivo, Berchem, 2000

Boer&Tuinder (2001), Nog heel wat werk aan de ‘bio’winkel, and Bioconsumptie in stroomversnelling, 16 February, 2001

CELCAA (1999), Minutes of the first meeting of the Standing Group on <<Organic Farming>> of the Advisory Committee on <<Agricultural Product Qualtity and Health>>,on 13 October 1999, Comité Européen de Liaison des Commerces Agro-Alimentaires, Brussels, 1999

Heuschen, C. (2000), Organic farming in Belgium,
http://www.organic-europe.net/country_reports/belgium/default.asp

Michelsen, J. et al (1999), The European Market for Organic Products: Growth and Development, Organic Farming in Europe: Economics and Policy, volume 7,

Ministry of Agriculture (2001), L’agriculture biologique, Ministry of Agriculture, Brussels, February 2001

Poirier, J. (1999), The Agri-Food Market in Belgium, The Canadian Embassy in Belgium, August 1999

USDA (1999), Belgium-Luxembourg Organic, The number of Organic Farmers in Belgium has the Potential to Increase Ten-fold, US Embassy, Brussels

www.colruyt.be
www.delhaize-le-lion.be
www.gb.be

Annex I

Umbrella organization for organic sector

Bioforum
Chemin de la Haute Baudecet 1,
B-1457 Walhain
Tel. 32-81-601540
Fax 32-81-600521

Organic farmers organizations

Belbior
Statiestraat 164 C
2600 Berchem
Tel. 32-3-287 37 72
Fax 32-3-287 37 71
wim.vdb@agris.be

UNAB
Union Nationale des
Agrobiologistes Belges
Secretariaat: Philippe Loeckx,
Le Quesniau 14,
7870 Montignies-Lez-Lens,
Tel./Fax 32-65-227260
unab@skynet.be

Organic processors organizations

Probila-Unitrab
Kerkplein 5
9667 Horebeke
Tel. 32-55-456741
Fax 32-55-456742
Secretariaat: Leuvensebaan 368,
B-3040 Sint-Agatha-Rode
Tel. 32-16-470198
Fax 32-16-470199
hugo.baert@skynet.be

Biogarantie
BP1, Stationstraat 24
B-3051 Sint-Joris-Weert
Tel. 32-16-470198
Fax 32-16-470199
hugo.baert@skynet.be

Consumers organizations

Nature et Progrès
Rue de Dave 520
5100 Jambes
Tel. 32-81-303690
Fax 32-81-310306
natpro@skynet.be

VELT
Uitbreidingstraat 392c
2600 Berchem
Tel. 32-3-2817475
Fax 32-3-2817476
velt@village.uunet.be
http://gallery.uunet.be/velt/

Organic extension services and information

BLIVO vzw
Instituut voor Voorlichting en
Onderzoek vzw,
Statiestraat 164 c te
2600 Berchem
Tel. 32-3-287 37 70,
Fax 32-3-287 37 71
blivo@agris.be

Carab asbl
Chem. de la Haute Baudecet 1,
B-1457 Walhain
Tel. 32-81-601540
Fax 32-81-600521
http://users.swing.be/carab/

Certification

ECOCERT Belgium bvba
Schermlaan 85
B-1150 Brussels
Tel. 32-2-7794721
info@ecocert.be
http://www.ecocert.be

BLIK vzw
Statiestraat 164 B
B - 2600 Berchem
Tel. 32-3-2873750
Fax 32-3-2873751
info@blik.be
www.blik.be

Other

Vlaams Informatiecentrum
Over Land- En Tuinbouw
Leuvenseplein 4 te
1000 Brussels
Tel. 32-2-5106391
Fax 32-2-5106393
info@vilt.be
http://www.vilt.be

Importers and wholesale

Belfruco N.V.
Rostockweg 1
2030 Antwerpen
Tel. 32-3-540 5990,
Fax: 32-3-541 6543
(fruit imports)

Biofresh N.V.
Dirk Thienpont
Fortsesteenweg 40
2860 St. Katelijne Waver
Tel. 32-15-56 0160
Fax 32-15-56 0185
info@biofresh.be
www.biofresh.be
(packer and importer)

Biomarché
Dirk van den Broek
Z.l. rue de la Basse Sambre 24
B-5140 Sombreffe
Tel. 32-71-82 31 00
Fax 32-71-82 31 09
info@biomarche.be

Capespan Continent
(North) Atlantic Houses
10th floor
Noorderlaan 147
2030 Antwerpen
Tel. 32-3-546 0900
Fax 32-3-546 0909
www.capespan.be
BenTaieb@capespan.be
(importer of fruits)

Döhler België GCV,
Schuurhovenveld 1131
3800 Sint-Truiden
Tel. 32-11-69 01 11
Fax 32-11-69 01 90
(fruit imports)

Mondi Foods
Gammel 91
Rijkevorsel
Ms Schellekens
Tel. 32-3-314 65 55
Fax 32-3-314 89 56
Mr Paul Vieftsema (Importer)

Havenbedrijf Noord
Stadswaag 7/8
2000 Antwerpen
Mr Frederic Claeys
Tel. 32-3-541 31 06
Fax 32-3-542 3368 (importer)

S-In-O bvba
Postbus 4
2860St. Kateline Waver
Tel. 32-15-55 59 08
Fax 32-15-55 01 54
Mr Isag (importer)

Atalanta CV
Vlaanderenlaan 4A
8970 Poperinge
Tel.: 32 - 57-33 55 99
Fax; 32-57-33 43 00
(importer vegetables)

Bio-DS nv
Rechtervaartoever 49-51
9800 Deinze
Tel. 32-93-81 85 55
Fax 32-93-81 85 60
(importer potatoes)

Degrieck nv
Igor Donckels
Werkenstraat 43
B-8600 Vladslo
Tel. 32-51-51 01 84
Fax 32-51-50 15 19
igor.donckels@degrieck.be
(importer vegetables)

Enzafruit New Zealand
Tongersesleenweg 135
3800 St. Truiden
Tel. 32-11-68 99 99 41
Fax 32-11-67 39 56
(importer apples/pears)

Maya
Oude Kuringerbaan 2
3500 Hasselt
Tel. 32-11-87 30 64
Fax 32-11-87 30 64
(importer vegetable specialities)

Zespri International nv
De Keyserlei 5
Postbus 43
B-2018 Antwerpen
Tel. 32-32-31 13 24
Fax 32-32-317411 or
32-32-010891
parmenv@zespri.co.nz
(importer of kiwi fruit)

Retail

Delhaize
Alain Hautman
Broekooi 5
1731 Asse (Zellik)
Tel. 32-24-812614
Fax 32-24-812618
ahautman@delhaize.be
www.delhaize-le-lion.be

Colruyt
Ms Martine van Schoorisse
Brussels
Tel. 32-2-236 01040
www.colruyt.be

GB (Carrefour)
www.gb.be

Government

Ministry of Agriculture, DG 4
Mr Ch. Papeians or Mr Olivier
Wastiaux
WTC3 - Simon Bolivarlaan 30,
6th floor
1000 Brussels
Tel. 32-2-208 32 11
Fax 32-2-208 37 05

Other

EUCOFEL
European Union of the Fruit and
Vegetable Wholesale, Import and
Export Trade
Mr Luc Hellebuyck, Secretary
General a.i.
29 Rue Jenneval
B - 1000 Brussels
Tel. 32-2-736 1584
Fax 32-2-732 1747
eucofel.fruittrade.org@skynet.be

Haest Consultancy for the Organic Sector
Mr Carol Haest
Parvis Saint-Roch 1
B-1325 Chaumont-Gistoux
Tel. 32-10-68 1387
Fax 32-10-68 112
carol.haest@euronet.be


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