Report: Poland’s farms are getting bigger

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Statistics Poland (GUS) recently released the initial results of Poland’s general agricultural census for 2020, with Statistics Poland’s head, Dominik Rozkrut, pointing out that the initial data shows important trends in the country’s agricultural sector.

“We have observed an increasingly strong specialization of agricultural holdings, rising concentration of agricultural production, a rise in stocking density and a decrease in the number of agricultural holdings. We have less and less holdings, but they are increasingly larger,” he said.

The head of GUS informed that there are currently 1.317 million agricultural holdings operating in Poland. This is 13 percent less (about 190,000 fewer) than compared to the census from 2010. Dominik Rozkrut added that despite the decreasing number of holdings, their surface area has been growing. According to 2020 census data, their area has increased from 9.8 hectares in 2010 to 11.1 hectares in 2020, representing a growth of 13 percent.

Statistics Poland noted that the number of holdings of areas up to 15 hectares has decreased by 16 percent. Meanwhile, the number of holdings larger than 15 hectares has grown by around 6 percent.

The census also points out that when comparing data from 2010, the structure of sowing of certain crops has changed. The share of grains (4.5 percentage points) and potatoes (1.5 percentage points) has dropped. The shares of cruciferous and ground vegetables have not changed. The share of sugar beet has risen only slightly over the decade (by 0.3 percentage points).

According to the census, Poland’s bovine population has risen by 10 percent over the last 10 years – up to 6,299 units. Meanwhile, the population of porcine livestock has decreased by over 26 percent down to 11203 units.

Statistics Poland explained that this data shows that agricultural holdings which deal with rearing or breeding cattle and porcine have become more specialized.

The census also informed that in 2020, Polish farmers had around 167,000 combine harvesters, 10 percent more than in 2010. The number of crop dusters for protection has decreased by about 5 percent, down to 513,000.

The 2020 general agricultural census was conducted by GUS between Sept. 1, 2020 and Nov. 30, 2020. It is the second agricultural census since Poland joined the EU in 2004.

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