Enhancing the Italian FADN for sustainability assessment: The state of art and perspectives
Farm Accountancy Data Network (FADN) is one of the most important microeconomic surveys in Europe. It collects information suitable for use in performing structural and socioeconomic analysis of the agricultural sector in all the Member States. Contents and purposes have evolved over the time depending on the informative needs of the EU Commission and CAP’s priorities. As a part of the Green Deal, CAP is expected to contribute to the environment, climate change and biodiversity objectives beyond 2020. In this new framework, one initiative launched inside the Farm to Fork Strategy has been the change of name from fadn to Farm Sustainability Data Network (FSDN) including variables related to the environmental and social aspects of farming. Like in other EU countries, the information collected by the Italian FADN exceeds that required by the EU regulations, allowing to some extent consideration of special characteristics of national agriculture. However, further variables could be added or changed, gathering them directly from the farmer, by including the existing database or through targeted questionnaires on fadn sub-samples. The new survey will maintain and improve the current role of FADN, reinforcing the analytical and political relevance of the network by adding further dimensions of sustainability. The discussion is on-going at EU and National level and this paper is a contribution to this debate. It gives a description of the environmental and social data gathered by the Italian FADN together with a consideration regarding about the opportunity and the possibility to enhance the system in view of the future period under evaluation. The switch to FSDN will require an effort from the Member States in terms of IT infrastructure, economic resources, new ways of collecting data and staff involved in data collection and the verification process.
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