Purpose – This chapter aims to explore the consequences of a renewed impetus for ‘neo-productivist’ agriculture on multifunctionality in Western Europe.
Purpose – This chapter aims to explore the consequences of a renewed impetus for ‘neo-productivist’ agriculture on multifunctionality in Western Europe.
Design/methodology/approach – We analyse how the issue of multi-functionality has been interpreted and implemented in Western Europe through a comparison between Norway and Scotland (as an EU example). Relevant policy documents and literature are analysed. The chapter explores whether European agricultural multifunctionality is being revised in response to the rise of neo-liberal (neo-productivist) ideologies, food security and climate change issues.
Findings – Our results suggest that Norway and the European Union have developed somewhat different understandings of multifunctionality. In response to recent events these forms are diverging further with the EU strengthening and Norway weakening their respective policies and discourses. However, in both cases, food security and climate change are emerging as key elements in the restructuring of both policy and rhetoric.
Research limitations/implications and practical implications – The study has been limited to an overview of multifunctionality within the European context and a case study approach using Norway and Scotland. Nevertheless, in highlighting the flexible use of the notion of ‘multifunctionality’, it illustrates to policymakers the importance of maintaining a focus on its key environmental and social objectives in the face of pressures to increase production and liberalise agricultural policies.
Originality/value – This is one of the first studies to point out the varied nature of the ‘multifunctionality’ discourse in Europe and how it is likely to change further in response to economic, environmental and social changes.
Purpose – The policy approach of multifunctionality – that agriculture has benefits beyond the production of food and fiber – has been debated within global trade…
Purpose – The policy approach of multifunctionality – that agriculture has benefits beyond the production of food and fiber – has been debated within global trade negotiations. Little is known about the perceptions of agriculture's multifunctional nature at the local level. These perceptions may be particularly pertinent in rural locations undergoing rapid transformations of the agricultural system, economic base, and related land uses. This chapter describes research conducted to examine the perceptions of agriculture's impact on local communities and the policy choices needed to support agriculture's multifunctionality.
Methodology – Six focus groups were conducted in Pennsylvania, USA. Counties were selected to represent three differentiated rural spaces (contested, clientelist, preserved), in which production and consumption interests claims vie for control of rural land. Participants represented both production and consumption interests, and described their perceptions of local agriculture and policy preferences.
Findings – Production and consumption interests across the study sites expressed views consonant with global discussions, in that agriculture provides significant positive impacts and few negative. However, locally specific issues related to taxes, land use planning, and farmland preservation dominated discussion. Participants supported a mix of policy tools (voluntary, regulatory, educational), but gave little credence to federal programs.
Research limitations/implications – Policy initiatives to support agricultural multifunctionality need to be sensitive to local conditions and create an enabling environment to allow multiple stakeholders opportunities to identify issues and preferred policy mechanisms.
Originality – Previous research has identified multifunctionality concepts at the global level; this chapter localizes multifunctionality, and examines potential hurdles to implementation.
This chapter presents an overview of the ‘big’ data of Mediterranean agriculture, with a special focus on the four EU countries (Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece), in…
This chapter presents an overview of the ‘big’ data of Mediterranean agriculture, with a special focus on the four EU countries (Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece), in order to provide a backdrop for the rest of cases analysed in the volume. In this regard, two thesis are discussed: the assumption that farming systems in the South have not followed the process of ‘productivist modernisation’ characterising post-war Northern European agricultural change, and that, precisely due to this reason, most holdings and regions from the South would have more possibilities to adapt to new approaches of multifunctional rural development.Thus, the chapter tackles both the static and dynamic structural traits of Southern agricultures and their differences with the North, as well as several aspects of the organisation of farming in the Mediterranean and other key components of productivist modernisation: farm intensification and specialisation. Later, the diffusion of multifunctional dynamics is addressed, in order to introduce some reflections about their meaning and scope in the Mediterranean regions. The chapter ends with a straightforward typology of Southern farming systems and a concluding section, which goes back to discuss the two initial theses.
Multifunctional agriculture, including value-added agriculture, has drawn the attention of different stakeholders (government, farmers) interested in maximising the…
Multifunctional agriculture, including value-added agriculture, has drawn the attention of different stakeholders (government, farmers) interested in maximising the potential of farming operations and strengthening rural communities. This preliminary study aims to investigate value-added agriculture, including the extent to which food growers consider, or are involved in, this aspect of multifunctional agriculture, from the perspective of orchard operators located in different Australian states.
Orchard operators were contacted through regional growers' associations and by mail. A total of 80, the large majority of whom are small orchardists, participated in the study, completing a questionnaire designed to collect both quantitative and qualitative data.
Overall, there is moderate interest among the participating orchard operators in adding value to food production. Respondents also indicate barriers in the form of added expenses, lack of time, knowledge, and markets, to sell value-added products.
This study has only provided preliminary data from a limited number of participants; future research could broaden the scope to gather the insights of more orchard operators or even study other rural food-growing sectors.
With increasing pressures on the farmland, the findings have several implications, in particular, the need to understand the cost-benefits involved in value adding activities and potential cost-savings strategies.
In the case of Australian agriculture, little has been discussed about the extent to which value-added food production is being considered among food growers, for instance, using commercial kitchens to process foods that do not sell as “premium.” The present study examines this unexplored dimension and seeks to provide useful preliminary information.
This chapter aims to analyse the evolution of competing paradigms and theoretical frameworks that have pervaded the debates on the present and future of agricultural and…
This chapter aims to analyse the evolution of competing paradigms and theoretical frameworks that have pervaded the debates on the present and future of agricultural and food systems and their associated rural areas. From this global overview, we will extract common features of paradigms that are being reproduced over time as well as highlight the innovations introduced. Particular attention will be paid to discuss the responses and contributions inspired by European Mediterranean-based research, setting up the framework that underlines the subsequent chapters of the volume.
Purpose – This chapter responds to the re-centering of agriculture and food in official forums and public discourse in the current crisis context.Design – It re-examines…
Purpose – This chapter responds to the re-centering of agriculture and food in official forums and public discourse in the current crisis context.
Design – It re-examines the assumptions of the agrarian question through the lens of food regime analysis.
Findings – By examining these developments, particularly the recommendations of the IAASTD report, it is clear there is growing interest in the multifunctional conception of farming that is attentive to ecological and social sustainability.
Research implications – This rethinking is symptomatic of a transformation of the agrarian question: moving away from a concern with the political trajectory of capital in agriculture and the process of depeasantization, towards a concern with ‘peasant’ renewal. This registers an ontological shift towards an agro-ecological paradigm in which an ecologically driven conception of ‘value’ addressing social reproduction rather than capital accumulation is emerging.
Practical implications – New research on “repeasantization” undergirds this claim, and complements the global mobilization of small farmers around the project of food sovereignty. Practically, food sovereignty projects mean growing land rights claims and adoption of diverse forms of biological (rather than chemical) farming.
Social implications – This implies stabilizing rural populations and the possibility of health food and environments.
Value – Intellectually, such developments call for an analytical shift (in food regime and other analyses) towards values other than those of price and productivism in assessing the contribution of agriculture to human survival in a climate-challenged future.
Purpose – Reviewing the notion of ‘neo-productivism’ as represented in the literature, this chapter explores multiple forms of neo-productivsm and presents a case study of…
Purpose – Reviewing the notion of ‘neo-productivism’ as represented in the literature, this chapter explores multiple forms of neo-productivsm and presents a case study of the dairy industry of New Zealand as a new form ‘cooperative productivism’.
Design/methodology/approach – First, a brief review of the literature on neo-productivist forms is performed in order to develop a framework of neo-productivism as presented in the literature. Second, a case study of Fonterra in New Zealand is undertaken and makes the case that Fonterra represents a new productivist form (that does not fit within the current literature) – that of cooperative productivism.
Findings – Three forms of neo-productivism are described in the literature, namely market productivism, competitive productivism and ‘neo-productivism’. We find that cooperative organisations (in this case Fonterra) can also develop into highly productivist forms when the objectives of members concur with the corporate objectives and are facilitated by a supportive government and weak environmental regulation. The possible implications for European rural development are discussed.
Originality/value – This chapter presents the first framework of the different neo-productivist forms and describes the new concept of cooperative productivism.
In urban planning, peri-urban areas are often addressed with an urban-centric view on development, disregarding the multifunctional and dynamic opportunities that these…
In urban planning, peri-urban areas are often addressed with an urban-centric view on development, disregarding the multifunctional and dynamic opportunities that these spaces offer. As a consequence, we argue that land use functions such as agriculture do not reach their full potential, despite the increasing enthusiasm for peri-urban and urban agriculture. This chapter has a twofold structure: first it explores the opportunities and challenges for agriculture in peri-urban areas; and second, it studies success factors for envisioning processes promoting peri-urban agriculture in urban policy and planning.
Through action research, we gather and compare data from two envisioning processes in the Flemish cities of Ghent and Kortrijk. Both processes were initiated by the local authorities, with the purpose of developing a spatial vision for agriculture in peri-urban areas.
Results show that in both contexts, pressure on farmland is a key issue. In addition, we highlight that multifunctionality is rather complex, both in practice and from a governance perspective, but nevertheless promising as a territorial concept in envisioning processes. Regarding the envisioning process itself, the analysis shows that clarity and consensus on the objectives of the process, delineation of the study area, policy support, clear leadership, and inserting sound and reliable data into the process are important success factors.
This chapter provides insight into the visions, plans and strategies needed to embrace the potential of agriculture in peri-urban areas, through the exploration and valuation of participatory envisioning processes. Future research is needed to explore the implementation phases of envisioning processes in urban planning.
Which is the main characteristic of the French Mediterranean Agriculture (FMA)? The recognition of the multifunctionality of agriculture, supported by the institutions of…
Which is the main characteristic of the French Mediterranean Agriculture (FMA)? The recognition of the multifunctionality of agriculture, supported by the institutions of the territorial development? Or the development of social dumping considered as a necessity by many institutions of the sector? To answer this question the analysis is based on three main sources of data: agricultural statistics, monographs and administrative reports. The results show that the structural diversity is still important in the FMA. A significant proportion of the farms have based their economic strategy on making the most of the multifunctionality of agriculture. Some have built real success stories. But this development path cannot guarantee the viability of a large range of holdings: the number of farm holdings in FMA has decreased by 27% since 2000 and 57% since 1988. Due to the specificities of the Mediterranean productions, the cost of labour is still considered as a major adjustment variable to secure farm income in the region. Many situations are reported where the situation of casual labour is concerning, in particular for migrant workers. However, the working conditions of temporary migrant workers remain invisible and the image of the multifunctional agriculture is put forward as a marketing asset by all types of actors. This image is misleading. It makes invisible, issues that are essential for the future. Thus, it generates knowledge gaps and leads to the depoliticization of debates on the development models of agriculture in masking the contradictions and the conflicts of interest that they generate.
At the outset of this book, we argued that it was important that we study agricultural “policy regimes” rather than agricultural policy itself. Our reasoning was that our…
At the outset of this book, we argued that it was important that we study agricultural “policy regimes” rather than agricultural policy itself. Our reasoning was that our interest lies in the actual outcomes in terms of farming practice, industry arrangements, global trade linkages, technology assemblages, and agroecological relationships in particular countries and regions. It is a convenient fiction that these practices and arrangements are the direct result of the formal agricultural policy arrangements in each specific country. In reality, the formal policy process in each country (including not only agriculture, but also, in some cases, rural, environmental, trade, and social development policy) can be argued to be in constant interaction with wider global politics, geographically specific environmental and cultural dynamics, prevailing farm practices, and new technologies. To recognize this full assembly of dynamics that coordinate to determine actual farm practice, we use the term “policy regimes.” In neoliberalized economies such as New Zealand, there is even a strong sense in which devolved governance at the industry and sector level now operates within these regimes in the same way that formal agricultural policy does in European countries.