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Farming Systems and Global Threats: Problems and Proposals Northern Portugal Cases

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  • Marta-Costa, Ana Alexandra
  • Lourenco-Gomes, Lina

Abstract

In a context of growing global threats, from climate change, the depletion and degradation of natural resources, to the recent global economic crisis, consequences of short and long term are being witnessed, which undermine the agriculture sustainability. The systems vulnerability, their inability to resilience and the need for innovation is observed, emphasizing also the most capable systems (more sustainable), offering new opportunities and encouraging more environmentally friendly practices. This work takes as starting point the evolution of economic, environmental and social parameters in farms, in recent years, in order to try to identify the difficulties and the solutions capable of sustaining agriculture in the context of multiple hazards at the farm level. The main methodology focuses on inquiries to the responsible agents for developing the main agriculture activities held in Trás-os-Montes, including farmers and their associations. The results confirm the dependence of production factors outside the farm, the limited availability and the high cost of manpower, the weakness of marketing channels and the poor organization of the sector as the main problems. Effective responses to these situations are the opportunities of the activities under study: (a) establishment of an organized marketing circuit, (b) strengthening of mutual help between farms, (c) collective use of inputs, (d) use of environmentally friendly production practices, (e) self-use of products produced on the farm, strengthening their autonomy. This work proposes the society valuation for different levels of agriculture intensity, through discrete choices methodology, to identify the real importance that society attributes to the agrarian activity.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/114368
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by European Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland with number 114368.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ags:eaae11:114368

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Keywords: Farming sustainability; swot analysis; proposals; International Relations/Trade;

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  1. Kelvin J. Lancaster, 1966. "A New Approach to Consumer Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74, pages 132.
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