Agroecology is making its merry way in France. This is a promising form of agriculture and it is gradually progressing. According to a survey, 79% of farmers apply this concept in 2015 against 50% in 2014.
Agro-ecology is defined as “the set of practices based on several principles: biomass turnover, minimizing energy losses, genetic diversification, development of biological interactions …”. It is a transition of lifestyles and sustainable development. According to the survey conducted by BVA, on a sample of 800 farmers, the perception of this concept has evolved since it was understood as a term reserved for organic farming with the “application of ecology to agriculture”. Those who are aged 40 apply this method predominantly (85%). The most adopted solutions to learn and train in agroecology are knowledge sharing and collective approaches. Farmers put forward various reasons to engage in these techniques from the desire to protect the environment (53%), improved economic performance (46%) and health for themselves and their relatives (40%).
73% of farmers rely on at least three steps in relation to agroecology by reducing chemical inputs (76%), improving soil quality (72%), and protecting the quality of water (61%).
The survey shows that there are also obstacles to the implementation of agroecological techniques. The first hurdle concerns the regulatory constraints followed by economic constraints related to the activity and the increase in the workload or the knowledge that this requires. Furthermore, the tools available are mostly unknown to the farmers. However, the Economic and Environmental Interest Group (EEIG) helps farmers to federate and subsequently reduce their charges. The survey found that only 27% of farmers know this tool.
Agroecology is increasingly getting into agricultural practices but there is still room for improvement so that it fully expands. France government is encouraging farmers to develop agricultural practices to agroecology. The main aim is to enable the “land sector” to play a foremost role in the diminution of greenhouse gasses, contributing between 20% and 60% of the total fall by 2030.