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Recognising the amenities of mountain agriculture in Europe

  • Dax, T.

For many years, the specific handicaps of mountain areas in Europe have been seen as a major reason for targeted policies, particularly for mountain agriculture. There is a range of differences in the production difficulties due to the climate and topographical variety of geographical situations. Farm abandonment and marginalisation processes are seen as significant threats not just to agricultural production but also to regional development of these areas in general. From the 1970s, mountain farming support was conceived as one of the main instruments of structural policy aimed at the prevention of land abandonment, to preservation of the farming population in these areas and maintainance of cultural landscapes. It was framed within the Less-Favoured Areas (LFA) policy which also addresses other LFAs outside the mountain areas, including types of production difficulties. In the long term, it can be observed that this was one of the first measures to address environmentally beneficial farming systems and High Nature Value (HNV) farming systems. It was developed both within the EU and rwn - EU European countries.

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