Onderwerp scriptie

Effects of the abolishment of the EU milk quota system on dairy farm system development in Aveyron - Thibault Veyrac

The aim of this study was to describe and analyze variation in the response to the future abolishment of the quota system among different farm typologies in the department of Aveyron. Two criteria were used to define six typologies of farm: land use intensity (kg per ha) and the labor productivity (kg per work unit). To study dynamics from 2007 to 2012 an in-depth survey was done on 22 farms.

The study focused on the dynamics of conventional dairy farm systems in the department of Aveyron in France, in the perspective of the abolition of the EU milk quota system. Since 2007 the farm quota was decoupled from land tenure. As a consequence milk production in Aveyron increased from 150 000 to 245 000 liters per year per farm from 2007 to 2011. The present study had the aim to describe and analyze variation in the response to the future abolishment of the quota system among different farm typologies in the department of Aveyron. Two criteria were used to define six typologies of farm: land use intensity (LUI) (kg per ha) and the labor productivity (LP) (kg per work unit (WU)).

A total of 545 farms were classified in 6 typologies based on three LUI classes (LUI<3000, 3000<LUI<6000, LUI<6000) and two LP classes (less or more than 300 000). To study dynamics from 2007 to 2012 an in-depth survey was done on 22 farms. We observed the following trajectories that implied a change of typology:

  • Toward land intensification: farmers within this strategy of development decided to increase their milk production without investing in more land or bigger building.
  • Toward labor productivity: farmers within this strategy of development decided to have more dairy cows.
  • Toward performance: farmers following this path combined both LUI and LP.
  • Toward adaptation: farmers following this path stayed within their typology. Farmers do not invest so much and only make little improvements in order to have lower debt ratio.

All these pathways aim for a balanced system. A balanced system starts with self-sufficiency in feeds. Then, there are enough places in the building to host the whole herd in good conditions of animal welfare. The next link is between on one side the building and the land and on the other side the equipment. The system requires work force to run, a balanced system has enough manpower in order to run within good life conditions for the workers. At last but not least the economics are good enough to ensure a decent income to the workers families.


Student: TCH Veyrac

Supervisor: dr ir SJ Oosting

36 Ects