Pedolin, Dario; Six, Johan; Nemecek, Thomas

Agricultural production faces the challenge to improve both: The less than optimal economic situation with farmers achieving below average income as well as the environmental performance, because environmental goals are not achieved. The study analyses the question if we can achieve both, a more environmental friendly production and an improved the economic situation of Swiss farmers. Previous studies show that the economic and environmental performance of agriculture depends on the product group, with high within and between product group variance for environmental impacts as well as the economic performance. Furthermore, Swiss farms are often diverse, with multiple outputs being produced. Therefore, in order to address the question of joint improvement of both dimensions, we would like to assess the farms environmental and economic performances at the product group level. The environmental data for this project stems from the Swiss Agriculture Life Cycle Assessment Tool SALCA, and the economic data from the full cost data set provided by the Agroscope research group Managerial Economics in Agriculture. Both these data sets allow the assessment of individual product groups. We used Data Envelopment Analysis to aggregate the individual environmental impacts and economic outputs in order to get an environmental efficiency or eco-efficiency score. The summarized findings are: – The environmental and economic performance show relatively high variability within and between the product groups. – We found no significant tradeoffs between environmental and economic performance. – We estimate the potential for simultaneous improvement of both, environmental and economic performance up to 30%.