Danish organic control from farm to fork

The Danish organic controls cover the whole production chain from organic cultivation in the fields and cowsheds to the organic products displayed in the shops.

The first Danish organic law was adopted in 1987 and the Danish state took charge of the organic control system. The controls are carried out by the authorities under the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries.

The state authorities

  • authorise operations such as farms, market gardens and forestry cultivators, suppliers to and partners of agriculture, and food processors.
  • carry out the control at all authorised businesses and suppliers to agriculture at a minimum of one annual control visit, supplemented by a number of spot checks at selected operators and businesses.
  • carry out the control at all authorised food producing businesses as an integrated part of the general food control activities..

  • The control takes place in accordance with the rules of the EU’s organic regulations, so there is a control of both the physical conditions and of documents, etc. In connection with the control of documents there is an option to supplement this with control at both suppliers and customers, so there is certainty that the organic production chain is intact. State-employed controllers carry out the organic controls. The central authorities co-ordinate the controls to ensure a uniform control throughout the country. If the authorities discover any infringements of the organic regulations, they have a number of ways to react depending on the degree of the breach.

The sanctions are

  • An order to observe the regulations.
  • Lower classification of crops or animals.
  • Restarting the conversion of crops or animals to organic production.
  • A ban on sales.
  • In certain circumstances the reaction is supplemented by an administrative fine or a police report.
  • In the event of very serious infringements, the authorities can withdraw the organic authorisation.