The European farm economy is on the rebound. A new survey of European farm decision makers shows the agricultural business climate is at its highest since the spring of 2008, which is before the financial crisis hit Europe. A farm group called DLG (German Agricultural Society) conducts biannual surveys to track purchasing expectations in farming.
“The mood among farmers is optimistic,” says Achim Schaffner, DLG’s economist, in a DLG press release. Some 3,000 farmers in Germany, France, Great Britian, Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary were interviewed for the survey. Responses from the German farmers were the most optimistic, with 55% of them planning to make major purchases in the near future. Great Britain’s farmers were the second most optimistic.
The DLG states that a big reason for the optimism is the increased consumer demand for farm products that has created low supplies for grain and oilseeds. As a result, commodity prices are higher than farmers anticipated. Another reason for optimism is low interest rates. DLG says many farmers plan to modernize their production and increase efficiency while rates are low.
Eastern European farmers also plan to use the improved farm business climate to make investments. A whopping 68% of the farmers surveyed from the Czech Republic, 57% of the Polish farmers and 54% of the farmers from Hungary plan major investments.
For more information about the DLG Trendmonitor Europe surveys, visit www.dlg.org.