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Vikings were once "fierce" farmers - today Denmark leads the sustainable food revolution

When thinking of Denmark, you probably picture violent Viking raids – yet most Vikings were actually farmers. Denmark has always been an agricultural nation. And it became a pioneer in the field around the mid-1800s, when small farmers decided that collaboration would foster the best innovation – and keep everyone well fed. Today, Central Denmark is home to a cluster of global frontrunners within the entire food chain.

Over 170 years of innovation 

In the 1800s, farming and agriculture looked much different than what we see now. Farms were small and in tough competition, which forced their prices down. Many farmers struggled to make ends meet.  

However, somewhere in the mid-1800s, Danish farmers decided to innovate. They started to pool their resources to create better and smarter food production. By organising themselves in cooperatives, they could lower costs with bulk purchases, share technological research and create joint marketing companies for export. 

Quickly, Denmark became a strong international provider of food, because their collaboration also made room for improvements in quality and safety. By 1880, two thirds of the production was exported. These innovative steps were the first of many leading up to Denmark’s role as a global frontrunner today. 


Towards sustainable food  

Denmark is home to an ambitious climate agreement. With agriculture accounting for 15% of global greenhouse gas emissions, Denmark’s large agricultural industry is one area where green innovation can leave a true mark on the whole nation’s climate footprint. To push the food and agriculture industry towards a greener tomorrow, it relies on the development of new technologies that continuously reduce energy and water consumption.  

Digital technology is the next frontier for sustainable food production. Therefore, government authorities, research industries and companies within the entire food chain are working together in Central Denmark to push this innovation forward. Danish technology providers are now leading the way with robotics, GPS and drone technology for crop management, and predictive maintenance for smart food processes – to name a few.  

Collaboration made Danish agriculture stand out more than a century ago. Today, it is still the driving force behind a strong industry, eager to adapt for a more sustainable tomorrow. 


An industry attracting global attention and talent 

The industry in Central Denmark is a global frontrunner, thus attracting tech and engineering talents from all over the world. Talents whose ambition is to make a global impact. Are you interested in a career in food and agriculture?  


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