Opponent note no. 5b:: Support to Organic Farming and Bio-energy as rural development drivers

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paperAcademic


    Given the current competitive strength of North West European agriculture, organic farming and bio-energy production will not expand without subsidies. Technical research shows that high tech agriculture can be viable in the future if it is both efficient with respect to the environment and with respect to energy input. This is a more attractive route to attain the goals of the Lisbon strategy than to bet on organic agriculture. This high tech agriculture will be competitive with respect to large-scale producers from other continents. Roughly same applies for bio-energy. Here the value for society of producing bio-energy has to be larger than the market value of the biomass produced. This can be achieved by combining functions in rural areas. High tech conversion of various bio-energy streams will provide a competitive advantage for the rural areas in North West Europe. The overall conclusion is that organic farming and bio-energy will not contribute to the Lisbon strategy goals of 2010. However, investments in developing high tech agriculture and biorefinery will contribute to the Lisbon strategy, although the objectives will be met at a later stage. To fulfil the Lisbon strategy we have to change directions. We do not reach the desired objectives if we focus on minor improvement of current production systems. We have to develop completely new production systems. North West European agriculture has to do what it can do best: focus on knowledge intensive production of agricultural products. The outcome of these new policies is not certain, because the competitive strengths depend also on volatile price differences in commodity markets.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationGreen Roads to Growth : Proceedings of Expert and Policy Maker Forums - held in Copenhagen 1-2 March, 2006
    EditorsH. Saxe, C. Rasmussen
    Place of PublicationCopenhagen
    PublisherEnvironmental Assessment Institute
    Number of pages15
    ISBN (Print)9788779920453
    Publication statusPublished - 2006
    EventGreen Roads to Growth - Expert and Policy Maker Forums -
    Duration: 1 Mar 20062 Mar 2006


    ConferenceGreen Roads to Growth - Expert and Policy Maker Forums

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