How successful is organic farming really? – costs, revenues, facts

However, the organic farmers earn significantly higher prices for their products – which have also been significantly more stable than in the conventional sector. That is certainly one of the main reasons for switching from conventional to organic. But at the end of the day you will be billed, or at the end you have to see what is really left in your wallet.

In the case of grain, organic farmers have earned an average of 41 euros per dt for their wheat over the past ten years; that is more than twice as much as the conventional arable farmer got with 18 euros per dt. The price differences are not that great for milk. Here the organic farmers received an average of around 41 cents per kg. According to federal data, it was just under 35 cents for conventional farmers.

But as the statistics show: In the end, sales revenues based on the cultivated area were higher in conventional agriculture – because of the higher productivity. In conventional grain cultivation, farmers generated sales of 351 euros per hectare in the last ten years, compared to 187 euros for organic farmers. An advantage of almost 90 percent.

For milk, the ratio is somewhat closer to 849 to 755 euros per hectare for organic farmers. A gap of 12 percent. With pigs, conventional farmers generate sales of 724 euros per hectare, compared to 197 euros per hectare for organic farmers – an almost four-fold advantage for conventional farmers.

Across all production areas, conventional farmers have reported an average of EUR 3,450 per hectare in sales over the last 10 years – organic farms come to EUR 2,060, which is significantly less. Despite the lower prices for conventional farms and significantly higher costs (operating expenses) for fertilizer, crop protection, seeds and animal purchases, the so-called Operating profit of conventional farmers is therefore higher than that of organic farms.

The reason is the higher productivity. The question now is: Why has the income of organic farms been around 10 percent higher in the last 10 years? This seemingly difficult question can be answered relatively easily.


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