Research Institute for Organic Agriculture, Frick

Uptake of agri-environmental measures on organic and conventional farms in Switzerland

The willingness of farmers to adopt agri-environmental measures depends greatly on the farm type and management as well on the geographic conditions of the farm. The present paper analysed the differences in the uptake of agri-environmental measures between organic and non-organic farms. A statistical comparison based on the 2005 Swiss Farm Census showed that organic farms have on average 68% higher adoption rates than non-organic farms, with a level of 20% on organic and 13% on non-organic farms. The greatest differences were identified for the measures “hedges”, “extensive meadows”, “less intensive meadows”. Unlike the other measures on arable land such as “sown wild flower strips” at the edge or within the crop area were taken up more frequently on non-organic farms. We argue that the higher uptake of agri-environmental measures indicates higher biodiversity on organic farms.

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