Flourishing Amstelland

Stichting Beschermers Amstelland, a citizen initiative for the protection of Amstelland, is considering Amstellands future and its role therein. The board of SBA has requested the Science Shop to carry out a study on how the landscape can be a healthy economic base for the area.

The focus of dairy farming in Amstelland on the world market has risks for the quality of the landscape, while its competitive position is meagre compared to colleagues elsewhere in the Netherlands. The position for competition and negotiation on the local market for dairy and services (diversification) is better, but so far most farmers do not consider the local market as a serious option.

There is much uncertainty about what will happen to (the land of) farms that will terminate until ten years from now and this will have a large impact on the landscape.

Amstelland has much to offer to guests, but there is room for additional activities and packages. Information for international tourists is very poor. Much can be gained if the community of Amstelland develops and promotes their own brand. For a durable attractive landscape with many meadow birds and other biodiversity, it is necessary that the farmers delivering these landscape services are paid for their costs and preferable a little more.

A contribution can be asked from recreationists and tourists, and also hospitality companies can be requested to contribute collectively. Inhabitants and city dwellers can demonstrate their engagement by buying local products. In general, collaboration is needed to make Amstelland flourish. Also the government has a role in this: public payments for landscape management and a good spatial planning remain necessary.