businessweek.com; By Alan Bjerga: Organic-foods sales to businesses including Dean Foods Co. (DF) totaled more than $3.53 billion last year, about 0.9 percent of total U.S. farm receipts, the Department of Agriculture said.
At least 3.65 million acres were used to raise certified organic crops and livestock, the USDA said yesterday in a report. That’s approximately 0.4 percent of the 917 million acres of farm and ranchland in the U.S.
A survey by the Organic Trade Association last year showed that in 2010, retail sales of organic goods rose 7.7 percent to $28.6 billion from the previous year, outpacing the 0.6 percent growth in total food receipts. The figure represented about 4 percent of the overall food-products industry, the group said. Organics comprised about 12 percent of all U.S. fruit and vegetable sales that year, it said.
“There definitely much interest from consumers, and the demand is there,” Barbara Haumann, a spokeswoman Brattleboro, Vermont-based group said yesterday in an interview. “We need more organic farmers.”