In 2021, a good 49,000 farms were still operating in Switzerland – around 500 fewer than in the previous year, according to the figures published on Tuesday by the Federal Statistical Office (FSO).
According to the statistics, the decline can be attributed primarily to farms with an area of ten to twenty hectares. The number of large farms with more than thirty hectares of land, on the other hand, increased by almost two percent.
Organic farms are still in the minority
The BFS figures also show that the organic trend is continuing. The organic cultivation area as well as the number of organic farms increased in 2021 compared to the previous year. However, organic farms are still clearly in the minority – 84 percent of Swiss farms were still producing conventionally in 2021.
The statisticians recorded the biggest organic boom in wine. According to the BFS report, organic viticulture has doubled in four years.
More wheat and poultry
The structural survey of cereals showed an increase independent of the type of production. The acreage for wheat, for example, increased by five percent in one year. In view of the rising wheat prices due to the Ukraine war, the farmers showed good instincts.
Poultry production was also increased again. According to the announcement, the number of fattened chickens increased by 1.3 percent. The FSO attributed this to the increasing demand for domestic poultry.
On the other hand, in 2021 less cultivation area was used for sugar beets, grain maize and potatoes. However, hemp cultivation suffered the most. According to the BFS, after a steady increase, this fell by 31 percent within a year.