The Value of Agricultural Output in Romania, Up by 25% in 2021
The value of agricultural output in Romania increased by 25% in 2021, according to the economic accounts for agriculture (EAA) for 2021 published by Eurostat. The sharpest rate of increase was recorded in Bulgaria (+37%) and the third best performance belonged to Czechia (+16%). By contrast, the values of agricultural output in Finland, Malta and Cyprus remained broadly unchanged in 2021 from their respective levels in 2020, and decreased in Denmark (-2%) and Slovenia (-4%).
A majority of the EU Member States registered a rise in the value of agricultural output in 2021 compared to 2020. Among other key Member States, the value of agricultural output increased by 10% in Spain, 8% in France and the Netherlands, 6% in Italy and Poland, and 3% in Germany.
In 2021, agricultural output in the EU was valued at €449.5 billion (bn) in basic prices, representing an increase of 8% compared with 2020. This change stemmed from an increase in the price for agricultural goods and services as a whole (an estimated +7.5%), with volume of output remaining little changed from 2020 (an estimated +0.8%).
Almost three quarters of the value of the EU’s agricultural output in 2021 came from seven Member States; these were France (€82.4 bn, equivalent to 18% of the EU total), Italy (€61.2 bn, or 14%), Germany (€59.2 bn, or 13%), Spain (€57.1 bn, or 13%), the Netherlands (€30.6 bn, or 7%), Poland (€27.9 bn, or 6%) and Romania (€21.1 bn, or 5%).
A little more than one half (55.3 %) of the value of the total output of the EU’s agricultural industry in 2021 came from crops (EUR 248.7 billion), within which cereals and vegetables and horticultural plants were the most valuable crops (see Figure 1). A little more than one third (36.3 %) of total output came from animals and animal products (EUR 163.1 billion), a majority coming from just milk and pigs. Agricultural services (EUR 21.6 billion) and inseparable non-agricultural activities (EUR 16.2 billion) contributed the rest (8.4 %).
EU agricultural input costs not related to investment (intermediate consumption) were 10% higher in 2021 than in 2020. The changes in the value of agricultural output and intermediate consumption in 2021 resulted in a 6% rise in the gross value added generated by agriculture. The EU’s agricultural industry created an estimated gross value added of EUR 189.4 billion in 2021. Agriculture contributed 4.3% to Romania`s GDP and 1.3 % to the EU’s GDP in 2021.
Over the long-term, the amount of agricultural labour used has been in steady decline
Total agricultural labour input declined sharply in almost all Member States during the period between 2006 and 2021 (see Figure 2); the sharpest declines were in Bulgaria (an average -7.9 % per year), Romania (-5.7 % per year), Slovakia (-5.3 % per year between 2006 and 2020), Estonia (-5.2 % per year) and Latvia (-4.5 % per year). This contraction in the agricultural labour force reflected both push and pull factors; there have been great strides in mechanisation and efficiency on the one hand and, on the other, a wider choice of attractive job opportunities in other sectors of the economy. The main exceptions to this general trend were Malta (+1.9 % per year on average) and Ireland (+0.2 % per year on average).
The contraction in the total work input from non-salaried labour between 2006 and 2021 was more pronounced than for salaried labour at the level of the EU as a whole (-3.7 % per year on average compared with -0.2 % per year). Over this period, there was an expansion in the use of salaried labour input in Luxembourg (+4.1 % per year on average), Austria (+3.2 %), Denmark and Ireland (both +2.1 %), among others, but sharp particularly contractions in Slovakia (-4.5 %), Greece (-4.2 %), Slovenia (-3.6 %), Czechia (-3.1 %) and Romania slightly above the -3% mark.
Risk from pesticide use in decline, mainly in Romania
Sales of pesticides in the EU were 346,000 tonnes in 2020, similar to the levels sold annually since 2011. The data on pesticide sales cover all types of sales, not only for use in farming but also, among others, forestry. The types of active substances used in pesticides are changing and volume is not indicative of the potential hazards associated with the use of pesticides. Harmonised risk indicator 1 (HRI1) estimates the trend in the risk from pesticide use and covers all sectors of the economy. The risk from pesticide use has been in decline over much of the past decade across the EU as a whole; compared with the average between the years 2011 to 2013, the risk from pesticide use is estimated to have declined by about 22 % through to 2020 (see Figure 3).
During this timeframe, the risk from pesticide use fell in a clear majority of Member States, the steepest declines being in Romania (-65 %), Czechia (-51 %) and Luxembourg (-49 %). There were a few Member States, however, where the risk rose; in Latvia it increased by 61 % between the average of 2011-2013 and 2020, in Estonia by 53 %, in Finland by 44 % and in Austria by 35 %. Such increases may occur for countries starting from a baseline much lower than the EU-average.
Photo source: PxHere.