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The Warsaw Voice » Special Sections » September 29, 2014
The Lubelskie Voice
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Turning Farming into Good Business
September 29, 2014   
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With rich soil and good climatic conditions it comes as no surprise that farmland occupies a significant portion of the Lublin region. According to the Central Statistical Office (GUS), farmland accounts for 57.8 percent of the region’s total area. More than three-quarters of this farmland (75.7 percent) is arable land.

The indicator of the quality of farmland in the region stands at 74.1 points, according to a scale designed by the Institute of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation in Puławy, a city in the Lublin region. That score is one of the highest in Poland, after those of the Opole and Lower Silesia regions. The national average is 66.6 points.

This potential is heightened by the education, knowledge and experience of local agricultural producers. The Lublin region is third in Poland in the production of potatoes per inhabitant and it is the runner-up in the production of wheat and tree fruit. In the production of field vegetables and bush and berry fruit, the Lublin region leads the way nationwide. One of the important determinants of these successes is that farmers in the region increasingly work together as part of producer groups. In terms of number of such producer groups, the Lublin region is among areas leading the charge in the country.

Cattle and pig breeders in the Lublin region are also among the best in the country. Their livestock has for years won awards and been named champions at prestigious agricultural shows. Two years ago the Lublin region set a national record in terms of milk yielded by herds of dairy cattle—at 13,007 kg of milk per cow per year. The Lublin region also boasts its own breed of pig called ¶winia puławska (Puławy pig), and local breeders have successfully reintroduced a cow breed known as białogrzbietka that was previously classified as extinct.

The region is in fifth place in Poland in terms of the number of registered organic farms. Well over 2,000 certified farms in the region refrain from using chemical pesticides and fertilizers, using only natural manures and minerals available in nature. They also use their own organic feed when feeding the livestock. Food produced by these farms is highly valued by consumers, not only in Poland, but also abroad.

Vigorously developing tourism is another sector showing the activity of the region’s residents in diversifying their sources of livelihood. The region is home to about 500 rural farms, which may be less than in some other regions in the country, but the potential and efforts of local farm and guesthouse owners are producing spectacular results.

The significant potential of the Lublin region in terms of the development of modern agriculture was highlighted in the main assumptions of the local authorities’ regional and innovation policies. One of the main objectives of the region’s development strategy for 2014-2020 adopted by the regional government is the restructuring of agriculture and rural areas. Under the Regional Innovation Strategy for 2014-2020, the “bio-economy” sector is defined as the key “smart” specialization of the region.
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