The areas of ecological compensation (AEC) required for farms receiving subventions have so far delivered modest results against the loss of biodiversity in cultivated landscape of Switzerland. Insufficient ecological quality and inadequate locations of these areas are to blame. The results of our study show that whole-farmadvisory can efficiently improve the situation even on intensive farms of the Swiss plateau. All participating farms were willing to sign contracts that will increase the mean AEC from 8,9 to 13,5 % of their agricultural area in use (AAU). Crucially, the quality of the AEC according to the ordinance on ecological quality increases from 3,3 to 8,5 % of the AAU. This substantial improvement of the ecological performances can be reached without negative impacts on production or farming income. On the contrary, the gains and profit contributions increase by CHF 3500.– and CHF 3491.– per farm, respectively.
Agroscope has developed a scoring system for plant protection in vegetable crops. The system enables the creation of incentives for reducing the use and environmental risks of plant-protection products and promoting preventive and non-chemical measures.
Many consumer goods contain activated carbon, which can be contaminated with pollutants like polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Agroscope showed that current analytical methods and legal bases used to address PAH content are incomplete.
Dry summers can see a loss of up to 25% of total Swiss roughage production. This is because grassland yields are strongly correlated with summer drought, as shown by a new analysis conducted by Agroscope and the Swiss Farmers’ Union.