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New results from Copa and Cogecas’ survey in the first quarter of 2017 shows that farmers are more optimistic about future economic prospects, compared to 2016, when they hit an all-time low.

Copa and Cogeca Secretary-General Pekka Pesonen said “Although agricultural commodity prices remain at quite a low level in many sectors, the situation has stabilized since 2016, and our latest agricultural barometer survey shows that confidence amongst farmers about their future prospects is starting to pick up, compared to previous years. Commodity prices in many sectors have remained relatively stable since the second half of 2016, notably in the dairy, pork, fruit and vegetable sectors, and we are seeing better prices than two years ago in sectors like dairy“.

In particular, in nine out of the 10 Member States participating in the survey – Belgium (Flanders), Denmark, Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Sweden – the survey shows that farmers´ confidence about the current economic situation and future expectations has increased, albeit at different levels. On the other hand, farmers´ confidence in the United Kingdom has fallen as uncertainty about Brexit looms. The political environment since the UK voted to leave the EU is a key driver for this fall in farmers´ long-term confidence, the survey shows.

Many farmers are also still feeling stifled by Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) implementation and the excessive bureaucracy under the CAP. Market volatility is also another factor affecting prices. The recent drought, frost and heatwaves in many regions of the EU could consequently affect some production sectors this year, especially the arable crops and wine sectors.

The Copa and Cogeca confidence index is calculated twice yearly on the basis of the results of national survey carried out amongst over 8,000 farmers.

The report is available at: http://www.copa-cogeca.eu/Download.ashx?ID=1701274.

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