Agriculture is impacted by global trends related to demographics, economics and climate change. New emerging technologies are becoming available that can boost effectiveness and reduce risks. Consequently, a “farm-tech revolution” is emerging within the scope of global trends which generate structural changes in farms and the wider value chain in unexplored ways, comparable to what happened in the 1950s when tractors started to be used more widely, and pesticides were introduced.
New opportunities to arise for the European plant protein market, suggests a study published by the European Commission today. The study concludes that the increased consumer demand for organic and genetically modified (GM)-free supply chains, combined with a rise in the number of flexitarian, vegetarian and vegan diets will expand markets for pulses and processed plant proteins.
Two new market observatories, for fruit and vegetables and wine, will be launched by the European Commission later this year. These observatories will bring greater transparency and analysis to two key sectors for European agriculture. Together, these sectors represent around 30% of the EU agricultural output value, with 24.1% for the fruit and vegetable sector and 5.4% for wine.
As part of the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) proposals for 2021-2027, a new tool is being developed to help farmers manage the use of nutrients on their farm. The Farm Sustainability Tool for Nutrients (FaST), proposed in the framework of the Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions (GAECs), aims to facilitate a sustainable use of fertilisers for all farmers in the EU while boosting the digitisation of the agricultural sector.
Rural areas make up 44% to 80% of every EU country. These diverse territories play home to a wide variety of flora and fauna, wonderful wildlife and natural environments. They provide food and resources that contribute to jobs, growth and prosperity, and help to maintain cultural heritage. Rural areas are truly at the heart of Europe.
EU member states will have to deal with the generational renewal of the EU farming sector “whether they like it or not,” young farmers say. And to do so, they first need to support a strong budget for the post-2020 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), they argue.
“As generational renewal is one of the CAP’s nine objectives, member states will be obliged to tackle this issue whether they like it or not,” Jannes Maes, president of the EU young farmers’ association (CEJA), told EURACTIV.com.