Besides food, agriculture can produce renewable raw materials as well. These vegetable products such as fibres, oil, carbohydrates or special components can be used in a wide range of industrial applications. Within the EU-project IENICA, the European countries analysed their use of renewable raw material at present. The project focused on the industrial application in the non-food sector in the field of agriculture, application and market of oil, fibres, carbohydrate and medicinal crops. In Switzerland, only a few value chains were built up using renewable materials in the last ten years, although the government supports cultivation of oil and fibre plants. Only the sector of medicinal plants seems to be successful. It is quite difficult to find general reasons to explain the limited importance of renewable raw materials in Switzerland due to the wide range of industrial applications. Price and quality seem to be the most important factors for the success of products based on renewable materials. The value chain between farmer and consumer has to be optimized. The preparation of the report showed quite clearly that an office dealing with all questions about renewable materials would be very preferable in Switzerland.
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.