According to the OECD definition, based on population density, rural regions account for 92 % of EU territory (2004/931/SEC). 19 % of the population lives in predominantly rural regions and 37 % in significantly rural regions. These regions generate 45 % of Gross Value Added (GVA) in the EU and provide 53 % of the employment. (2006/144/EC). As regards young people, the key issue is the decline of the traditional form of succession on medium-small holdings. It is expected that less young people will take over the farms, as remuneration is too low. Insufficient opportunities, contacts and training infrastructure are a particular problem for young people in remote rural areas. Helping rural areas to meet the economic, social and environmental challenges of the 21st century has become an overall EU priority. The Rural Development Policy (2007-2013) focuses on three thematic axes, from which especially the third axis ‘improving quality of life and diversification of the rural economy’ promotes training, information and entrepreneurship for women, young people and older workers (EU Council Decision, 2006).
This project aims to address the ageing farm workforce and the ongoing flow of young people out of the countryside as a serious challenge to the sustainability of the European rural economy.
To rear these objectives, the European Commission promotes the agriculture multifunctionality concept. It encourages new economic activities on farms. It also endeavours to establish the rural population and consolidate work positions. The problems and difficulties in adapting to the multifunctional concept are due to the lack of suitable preparation of farmers. This means that young farmers need to be trained to build up their own agro-enterprise according to Multifuncionality. The need for specific training for this collective and on this matter has been detected through daily contact of the partners with farmers and their experience in the rural world. The expected result is a Training System directed at young farmers to exploit rural areas. The essential objective of the System is to provide young farmers of all skills and competences they need to adapt their farms to the multifunctional concept, preparing them to create new ideas and put them into practice.
The System is based on a ‘case studies’. We will develop the training units from real positive experiences, according to good practices exchange. The end result will be a Training System for adaptation to the Multifunctional Concept with a Guide for the Trainers, Units for the users, available on both paper and CD format. All the material will be available on a website and in English, Italian and Spanish.
The Partnership is formed by:
- ASAJA-Granada: Professional Farming Organisation
- CIPA-AT: Assistance and Training Centre for Farmers of Perugia
- CEJA: European Conseil of Young Agricultures
- Granaforma: Lifelong Training Centre
- IfLS Institute for Rural Development Research
For more information see the project website: www.agri-multifunctionality.com
|Information and knowledge dissemination | Socio-economics of farm business ||
European Commission, Directorate-General Education and Culture
2009 - 2010
Contact person/s at IfLS: