The obvious need, in the context trade liberalisation, for further reforming public support for agriculture in Switzerland currently generates lively political debates among affected interest groups. However, a basic understanding of the important public-good issues involved is frequently lacking in these discussions. Currently, only a small fraction of the subsidies are tightly linked to explicit public-good agri-environmental services. We argue that future agricultural support will largely depend on whether the agri-environmental services can be well specified and specifically financed. Public support will have to be provided for the specific services demanded by the public in a “political market for public goods”. Farmers as enterpreneurs may participate in this market on their own accord. Departing from established economic concepts and drawing on empirical evidence about Swiss demands for agri-environmental policy, this article aims to contribute towards a demand-oriented agricultural policy.
Agrivoltaics combines energy generation and agricultural production on the same land. Although this system is eliciting increasing interest, its success depends on numerous factors and the most compatible crops have yet to be identified.
How do farmers experience social sustainability on their farms? As an Agroscope study shows, this depends on farmers’ identities and farm types.
Cheese stands out as one of the main Swiss agricultural trade offensive interests. Outside the EU, the USA are an important export destination. The CAPRI model allows to assess the impact of a free trade agreement for cheese between the USA and CH.