The intensity of energy use in the agricultural production systems of six industrialized countries, among them Switzerland, was investigated. The study has shown that Switzerland, like The Netherlands, has a high energy intensity. Between the 1980s and beginning of the 1990s the energy intensity of the Swiss agricultural sector has decreased. The same process can also be observed in the other European countries. The share of energy costs in the total production costs varies between 10 % to 20 %, depending on the commodity. A 1 % increase in energy cost would result only in a 1 % to 2 % increase in production costs.
Policies to reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions are more effective and more efficient if they are set at the regional level and not at the level of individual farms. This can help achieve climate targets.
Global food availability is expected to remain stable in the medium term. Food security challenges in Switzerland include the decline in agricultural land area per capita, higher incidence of extreme weather events and increased pressure from pests.
Different cultural backgrounds lead to different uptake of biodiversity agri-environmental schemes at the inner-Swiss French-German language border. Economic policy incentives could mitigate culture-driven behavioral differences.