Agriculturae Conspectus Scientificus, Vol 68, No 2 (2003)

Competitiveness of Livestock Production in the Process of Joining the EU

Klaus MEYN

Pages: 37-43


The accession of the eight CEE member states to the EU will integrate about 450 million consumers with rather similar consumption patterns for animal products. Both the old and the new EU members produce surpluses, but in ruminant meat production the EU will become a net importer. As the EU will be forced to reduce import barriers from the World market, price levels will decline, but probably be higher for ruminant production than currently in the accession countries. For pigs and poultry, feeds are assumed to be available at World market prices. Because of higher productivity, western European producers will be very competitive and competition will be strong. Labour saving investments into farm structures and productivity increases in all forms of animal production are urgently required, in order to reach competitiveness. Advances in productivity observed during recent years make such a development likely. To improve the competitiveness further, a certain concentration of production enterprises and processing facilities must be achieved, but over-concentration must be avoided for reasons of environmental protection. The sensitivity of consumers obliges all members of the food chain to develop and operate process management and control schemes, especially those who want to export food.


EU; livestock production; CEE countries

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