Six farm managers from a fodder-growing area in eastern Switzerland took part in a focus-group interview examining how various forms of collective farming were perceived. Although it is not possible to generalise on the statements made at the interview, a number of illuminating attitudes and thought patterns were discerned: the farm managers viewed the intense collective forms of partial farming collective and farming collective from a number of angles, perceiving advantages and disadvantages in both. Nevertheless, the drawbacks outweighed the benefits, and it is becoming clear that neither form of collective represents an obvious choice for the farm managers, or is supported by the social environment.
Thanks to their unique landscapes, the 15 Swiss parks, the majority of which are located in the (pre-)Alps and in the Jura Arc, feature as tourist attractions. But do the parks also provide economic value-added for local agriculture?
To balance their nutrient cycles, Swiss farms export surplus farmyard manure to farms with free uptake capacities or to composting and anaerobic digestion facilities. Between 2015 and 2020 the volumes of organic manure and recycled fertilisers transported rose significantly, with a consequent increase in transport costs.
Employment in the agricultural sector is declining in many European countries, especially in livestock farming. Direct payments can counter this trend and lead to the employment of more – especially female – family members on the farm.