Organic Farming in a Regulatory Perspective. The Danish Case

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Abstract

Organic farming aims at developing self-regulating sustainable farming systems and seems to be an important example of environmental self-regulation with a strong basis in values. Political acknowledgement of organic farming included the introduction of public certification, but this may disturb self-regulation. This issue is discussed on the basis of Danish experiences, which include major increases in organic farming and domestic organic food markets. Originally public certification of organic products was introduced on the basis of close co-operation with the organic farming movement, but the introduction of eu certification gradually undermined co-operation, and the organic social movement has now lost control over production standards. Danish organic farmers seem on the other hand prepared to develop and use new methods of self-regulation. The farmers accord well with the fundamental values of organic farming, they do not violate the standards, and they are interested in active use of organic farming values in farm management.

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