Organic farming in Morocco

Today’s consumers are becoming more aware, concerned and informed when it comes to the quality of the food and fiber products they use. Thus, organic farming has experienced an impressive rise, and is becoming increasingly large. The organic farming industry is valued at several billion dollars and has posted double-digit revenue growth.

As a major producer and exporter of agricultural products, Morocco make up a very strong player in the development of the organic sector. A total of 7,400 hectares are dedicated to organic farming, which corresponds to a production of 75,000 tonnes, of which 12,500 tonnes are exported and 60,000 tonnes are consumed in Morocco.

Morocco’s agricultural heritage includes:

A variety of fruits such as oranges, carobs, clementine, olives, apples, plums, pomegranate, walnut …

Vegetable crops such as: tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, carrots, zucchini and beans…

Aromatic and Medicinal Plants: capers, saffron, verbenas, lavender, jasmine and lemongrass …

Of all these, aromatic and medicinal plants, carobs and olives take up respectively 23%, 18% and 14% of the cultivated area. In terms of production, vegetable crops, citrus fruits, aromatic and medicinal plants alone account for 63% of total production, with respectively 21,680 tonnes, 15,200 tonnes and 10,116 tonnes.

Other organic products grow spontaneously such as argan, rosemary, thyme, sage, cumin, oregano, coriander, oleander, fennel, lavender, marjoram, basil, pine …

Two major axes are involved in the growth of the organic farming industry. First, the cost of certification prevents certain organic producers from being recognized.  The second one is the redevelopment of conventional productions.

The objectives targeted by the organic sector are 400 000 tonnes in plant production. This would allow the export of 60,000 tons for a turnover of 800 million Dhs.

Faicel El Kherchi

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