Growing Strong the Development of the Dutch Agricultural

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9789052126159: Growing Strong the Development of the Dutch Agricultural

Almost 16 million people live in the Netherlands in a total area of 34,000 km2. That means 4.7 people per hectare of dry land and on top of that there are a couple of million cows, 13 million pigs and 100 million chickens. In addition, nearly 70% of the land is used for agriculture and horticulture, and together with the agri-industry it provides enough for a sizeable surplus on the agricultural trade balance. How does the Netherlands manage this situation and what are possibilities for the future? 'Growing strong', a publication on occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Agricultural Economics Research Institute (LEI, part of Wageningen UR), describes how the present situation arose - in what setting it started, how the growth was encouraged, and what advantages it yielded. In 15 chapters, covering different aspects from the history of trade development, environmental and socio-economic factors up to trends in the primary sector and agricultural policy, the pros and cons of so much production on such a small plot of land are described. The book does not pretend to offer a single, coherent theoretical model as explanation of the developments, but is more intended as an illustration of important forces that set and kept the engine in motion. The current position of the agricultural sector is no guarantee for permanent success. Therefore, the final chapter pays attention to new challenges and offers a perspective for a vital agriculture keeping up with changes in society.

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