Local, organic, tasty, and cultivation-stable, old pea varieties for human consumption


Peas have formerly been cultivated in Denmark and adjusted to Danish conditions, but a change in eating habits and lack of a stable production has almost phased out the production of peas in Denmark.

However, peas are a valuable organic crop contributing to robust crop-rotations, increased nitrogen fixation, and increased soil fertility. With the growing focus on plant-based foods the production of tasty pea varieties should be strengthened.


The goal of PEAS & LOVE is to utilise the great potential of old pea varieties to produce ripe peas for human consumption.

Organic, tasty peas of high quality will be made accessible to the consumer by securing a profitable and stable production for the organic farmer.

From a unique collection of old pea varieties, the most promising will be chosen based on genetics, morphology, and taste. Detailed studies of root growth and the effect of organic fertilizers with low nitrogen content (N) will show the potential for yield stability based on an increased draught tolerance and soil fertility.

Furthermore, innovative co-cultivation systems will be developed to improve the harvestability. This will form a foundation for an increased organic pea production. Finally, new, interesting pea-based dishes and products will be developed.

The Project Step by Step

  • Screening and characterisation of approximately 300 old pea varieties, genetically, and for protein content and quality.
  • Selected varieties are cultivated in a ”Field Pea Lab” which makes it possible to explore pea varieties for other purposes as well as identify suitable qualities for future pea refining.
  • The effect of different fertilizers on nitrogen fixation, protein content and quality are examined in pot and field experiments respectively.
  • Variety differences in root development and draught tolerance are examined in greenhouse and field experiments.
  • Co-cultivation systems are developed to increase the harvestability. 
  • Promising pea varieties are demonstrated in “landsforsøgene” in collaboration with selected farmers.
  • New dishes and products based on tasty peas are developed.

Project Coordinator

Dorte Bodin Dresbøll

Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences
University of Copenhagen

Phone: +45 35333452

Project Partners

University of Copenhagen

  • Kristian Holst Laursen
  • Conny Bruun Asmussen Lange

Innovation Centre for Organic Farming

  • Inger Bertelsen

Pure Dansk

  • Astrid Søgaard
  • Malene Søgaard

Loop Food Lab

  • Jonatan Marcussen
  • Gábor Laki