About 20.7% of Europe is agricultural land (suitable for farming and pasture). Of this, 58.5% is arable land (suitable for farming only). In 28 countries of the European Union (EU), 40% of the land used is for agricultural production.
With urban development increasing, land available for agriculture has been declining. Agriculture in Europe is mostly carried out on small land holdings across Europe. With rising demand for food, the average size of farms has increased, but the number of farmers has been declining.
In 2013, 33.2% of the total agricultural land in EU was used for cereal cultivation, 5.9% for permanent crops, 0.2% kitchen gardens, 21.9% meadow and pasture, 11.4% rough grazing, 0.8% permanent grassland and meadow not used for production but getting subsidies, 26.5% other arable lands.
In 2016, the total agricultural exports from the EU was $161.28 billion, representing 7.5% of the total exports. For the same period, EU imported agricultural products worth $137.99 billion, representing 6.6% of the total imports.
Vegetable and horticulture output in EU is almost the same as cereals, while forage plant production is slightly higher than fruits production. At 43%, animal and animal product output is significant. Forage plants cultivation is higher than industrial crop production.
In regard to land area among the 28 countries of EU, France is the largest, followed by Spain, Sweden, Germany, Finland, Poland, Italy, and the UK, in that order.
Denmark leads in percentage of total land allocated to crop production – 50.60%, followed by Hungary 43.7%, Poland 33.20%, Germany 32.30%, Romania 32.2, and Czechia 32%.
The percentage of food and animal product output in EU (2016)
|Output||% of total production|
|Vegetable & horticulture products||24.90|
|Other crop products||1.20|
|Total Crop output||57.00|
|Total animal output||43.00|
Agricultural land use in 28 countries of Europe
|Country||Total area (sq miles)||% of Cropland of total land||% of Woodland & Shrubland||Grassland||% of Water areas & Wetland; bareland||% of Artificial areas|
|EU 28 countries||1,687,021||22.2||44.8||20.7||8||4.2|
The agricultural land as single ownership available in European Union countries in 2013
Land holdings for agriculture-related activities as single ownership is highest in Romania – 8,969 acres. Denmark has the highest overall percentage of land allocated to agriculture within the European Union, its single ownership land size is only 95 acres. Similarly, Germany ranks high on the percentage of agriculture land use but is a fifth of Poland in single ownership agricultural land ownership. Poland ranks high on total land allocated to agriculture as well as in single ownership land size comparison.
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