A new vision for agriculture
momagri, movement for a world agricultural organization, is a think tank chaired by Christian Pèes.
It brings together, managers from the agricultural world and important people from external perspectives,
such as health, development, strategy and defense. Its objective is to promote regulation
of agricultural markets by creating new evaluation tools, such as economic models and indicators,
and by drawing up proposals for an agricultural and international food policy.
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Employment in agriculture by 2022:
A slower decline in the number of farmers



Frédéric Hénin, Editor-in-Chief, Terre-net


Article published in Terre-net Média



In its report entitled “The jobs in 2022”, the French Government entity “France Stratégie” focuses on the agricultural sector. Retirements, installations of new farmers, transformations of farming jobs… The report reviews the key trends to be expected.

Agricultural jobs are future-oriented jobs. The authors of the “The jobs in 2022” report published by France Stratégie are convinced of this fact, since the population pressure and intensified consumption of food products will lead farmers to increase their yields. But agricultural operations will, as it was the case in past years, experience a reduction in workforce.

According to France Stratégie, 161,000 farmers will retire between now and 2022. Only 71,000 farming professionals will replace them. In other words, the decline in the number of farmers will continue, but at a more moderate pace than in the past 20 years.

There are several reasons for this trend, and the authors of “The jobs in 2022” authors list productivity gains and the more difficult access to land among them. But since the retirees’ farms are becoming increasingly more valuable, their continuation will translate in less regrouping of operations. This explains the 50 percent ratio between the number of retirees and of new farmers. In the 1990s, the ratio was much higher.


LATE RETIREMENTS IN SPITE OF THE ARDUOUSNESS OF FARMING

The changes affecting agricultural jobs will lead to more technical and supervisory personnel. Over 18,000 jobs would be created by 2022, in addition to the 13,000 slots made available by retiring workers.

The number of permanent or temporary salaried employees might also increase “to reach one out of four jobs”.

The development of the agricultural workforce is based on a scenario of the national economy growing by four percent annually. It does not include the consequences of the upcoming CAP reforms, or the impact of new non-food farming operations (renewable energy production and biomass) that will surely impact the workforce.


MORE FARMERS WITH MORE GROWTH

If the annual growth increases (+1.8 percent/year), agriculture would lose 12,000 jobs less, because consumers with more purchasing power might be more tempted to buy high-value added products. In addition, “improving the quality of products might advance their competitiveness in foreign markets whose demand continues to rise.” The agro-food industry would also add jobs.

The France Stratégie report also shows that the 2010 pension reform had little impact on farmers and on all self-employed workers, “since most of them were already retiring after 60.” Late retirements and pension plans are based on accumulated points.

On average, farmers retire at 61.4, and 15 percent of them work after 62. Only three percent of farmers retire because of arduousness issues.

By 2002, the national economy will not be able to rely on the higher number of farmers to take up the increased workforce. “Extremely dynamic by 2030, this increase in workforce will stabilize until 2030, to be followed by a renewed upsurge to 2060,” indicates France Stratégie.

In less than ten years, “the working population will exceed 29.5 million people, or an excess of 1.2 million persons when compared to 2012. Consequently, the working ratio of persons between the ages of 15 to 69 would go from 66.4 percent in 2012 to 68.2 percent in 2022.”


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Paris, 18 December 2018