In this project the socio-economic sustainability of starch potato production is examined. Sustainability is generally divided into three, environmental, cultural and socio-economic dimensions. The two first aspects are commonly well evaluated, but the third one often seems to receive less attention.
Socio-economic aspects cover profitability, or more generally viability and positive (and negative) externalities/spillovers provided by the activity in question. The viability of an activity is quite clear, production and processing have to be economically profitable for to be continued. The spillover effect can be conceptualised by differing aims of a farmer/processor and the society: The farmer/processor is mainly concerned about his or her own welfare and profit making whereas the society cares also about issues like employment, rural and regional activity, stability of production, environmental quality, import-export balance, etc.
The current situation and trends are examined concerning: a) costs of starch potato production; b) relevant subsidies (present and foreseeable; EU, national, regional); c) information on the external costs of intensive agricultural production and the possible changes resulting from an increase in starch potato production. The competitive position of starch potato production is discussed in macro-economic terms and in comparison with two other major crops within Finland.
The project has been carried out in cooperation with the Institute for Physical Geography at Goethe University Frankfurt and J. Peltola, MTT (Finland).
|Research | Socio-economics of farm business ||
European Commission, Directorate-General for Research
2001 - 2003
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