Key research questions
- How do we create a fairer food supply chain?
- What are the market opportunities for the organic sector? How can they be fully exploited by supply chain members?
- How can an integrated set of metrics be developed linking economic, social and environmental sustainability for the agricultural sector, so that informed decisions can be made by market players and policy makers?
The importance of business and markets
Sustainable food systems and markets are inherently linked. Practitioners of the food sector are more likely to adopt sustainable and innovative practices if they are financially viable and acceptable from a socio-economic perspective. Market dynamics are a key driver of the success and continued development of the organic sector.
ORC’s research in this area is committed to identifying market opportunities for the organic food sector considering the needs and views of farmers and other market players, and to inform practitioners accordingly. We aim to lead collaboration between public and private actors to establish a comprehensive knowledge base to support market and policy decisions, in the short term, and to encourage sustainable consumption patterns in the long term.
The socio-economic team of ORC has been involved in a number of national and international projects, which can be grouped as follows:
- Projects on the collection of organic market data, funded by the UK government and the European Commission
- Evaluation studies for the DG AGRI of the European Commission, including on added value in organic food supply chains and on the EU Organic Regulation.
- Research projects for the organic as well as non-organic sector, mainly funded by Defra and the European Commission