|December 30, 2003,
Organic Monitor: According to a new study by
the Organic Monitor organic beef sales surged in Canada
after a BSE infected cow was found in Alberta in June.
The new study shows that sales of organic meat products
expanded by 35% in 2003.
Many Canadian retailers reported record sales of organic
beef this year due to BSE elevating consumer demand.
The BSE scare is raising consumer demand for organic
meat products, says Organic Monitor, and retailers are
likely to respond by introducing these products in their
stores. Many consumers see organic beef to be safer
than non-organic beef since organically reared cattle
are not fed animal remnants. There have also been no
cases of BSE reported on animals that have been reared
their entire lives according to organic production methods.
The newly published study shows that organic poultry
dominates the organic meat products market in North
America, comprising over 70% of total volume. The relatively
short production cycle, large production volume, and
low price premium are responsible for organic chicken
to be the most popular organic meat with consumers.
In contrast, organic beef is typically produced on a
small-scale, distributed via inefficient supply chains,
and priced three times higher than conventional beef.
Consumers also perceive organic beef to be very similar
to natural beef, which is widely available in natural
food shops. These are factors behind organic beef to
have a mere 0.02% share of the US beef market in 2003.
BSE is poised to accelerate growth in the North American
organic meat products market. A large rise in domestic
production volume is envisaged as the number of organic
meat producers increases. Greater volume is to enter
retailers as supply chains develop from farmers to retailers,
and prices are predicted to decrease as organic meat
products become more available in retailers. Sales are
projected to surge in 2004 and 2005, however organic
meats are expected to face stiff competition from similar
products like natural meats in the midterm. A BSE-induced
shake-up of the meat industry is envisaged that will
raise meat production standards and improve safeguards,
possibly limiting demand for organic meat products.
Research Publication: #3001-44 The North American
Market for Organic Meat Products
Publication Date: December 2003