As part of the 30th Economic Forum in Karpacz, two discussion panels will be held under the patronage of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development. They will concern the Polish Deal in agriculture and economic aspects of animal diseases in animal production.

Polish Deal in agriculture – our role is strong Poland

The Polish Deal is a comprehensive strategy for overcoming the effects of the pandemic and, at the same time, it is a responsible plan for the economic recovery of Poland after the economic slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

One of the key tasks of the Polish Deal is the development of the agri-food sector and of rural areas.

The Polish Deal means the allocation of almost PLN 6 billion for investments related to diversification and shortening of the supply chain of agricultural and food products as well as building the resilience of supply chain operators.

The Polish Deal will bring many modifications in the way the agricultural administration has been functioning so far, will introduce facilitations for farmers and will de-bureaucratise cooperation with agricultural producers.

To this end, the following will be established, inter alia: an online one stop shop for farmers, i.e. a single place for farmers to submit e-applications, and a Central IT system for the state land resource. Digital solutions will also be used in other areas, such as the nationwide Satellite Crop Monitoring System, or building an IT system that will guarantee effective tracking of information at the key stages of the “from farm to fork” supply chain.

The Polish Deal will guarantee the introduction of a programme of investments allowing to combat and counteract the effects of drought. It is planned to allocate nearly PLN 3 million for supporting investments in rural areas with regard to improving water management and water resource use efficiency.

The Polish Deal provides for support for rural families – both parents, children and seniors, energy transformation of households, provision of broadband internet access with the possibility to upgrade to the speed available in gigabits per second and elimination of “white spots” in mobile telephony coverage.

This strategy will also make it possible to support the development of agricultural innovations and their dissemination as part of public funds. It is assumed, inter alia, to continue investment support for farms, to support building the market for agriculture 4.0 services and to support the transfer of knowledge and innovation to the agricultural environment.

The Polish Deal will provide the legal provisions guaranteeing the legal protection of family farms and the development of the Agricultural Code which will contain a set of legal provisions of fundamental importance in the field of agricultural law.

The list of projects is much longer and includes both legal and investment solutions.

The Polish Deal means:

  • Even higher reimbursement of excise duty on agricultural fuel;
  • Act on family farms;
  • More land for farmers;
  • Freeing of agricultural retail trade (RHD);
  • One stop shop for the farmers;
  • Monitoring of agricultural crops to counteract drought;
  • Flexible CAP Strategic Plan for small and medium farms;
  • Support for local producers in exports;
  • Agricultural Code;
  • Development of a network of food manufactories;
  • Polish food passporting;
  • Farmers’ energy cooperatives;
  • Capital for cooperatives;
  • Greater protection for agricultural producers;
  • Radical simplification for farmers;
  • Greater freedom of agricultural work;
  • Kickers for agricultural cooperatives;
  • Programme for the development of post-state farm villages;
  • Income Guarantee Mutual Fund for farmers.

 

 

ECONOMIC ASPECTS OF ANIMAL DISEASES IN ANIMAL PRODUCTION

 

The occurrence of certain animal diseases in the territory of a given EU Member State, such as, e.g. avian influenza or ASF, and, more recently, SARS-CoV-2 infections in farmed fur animals, results, on the one hand, in a need to pay compensation to farmers and breeders (avian influenza, ASF) and, on the other hand, in restriction on the possibility to export products of animal origin from the whole territory of the country or part thereof, where the disease is found.

 

This situation, intensified by an additional need to secure budgetary funds for the disposal of dead animals which, in the case of, e.g., influenza, are counted in millions of head, poses a threat to the liquidity of the budget reserved for agriculture and to the functioning of the export market for animal products.

Of importance is also the public health protection against new threats, which SARS-CoV-2 certainly is or the permanent monitoring of the zoonotic potential of viruses which so far have been pathogenic to animals only (H5N8 influenza virus), however, pose a possible threat to humans.

A new and current threat directly affecting both the economic health of the economy and the public health protection is visible climate change and the related possibility of the occurrence of vectors (insects, arachnids) that have not been found in our latitude so far and whose confirmed presence may result in the occurrence of further diseases having the economic potential and affecting the public health protection. Important is also the free movement of people, among countries and continents. In a dozen or so hours, a disease revealed in one end of the world can occur in another, it can be transmitted by thousands of people from one continent to another.

Pursuant to the Act of 11 March 2004 on animal health protection and control of infectious animal diseases (Journal of Laws of 2020, item 1421), for the control of infectious animal diseases subject to the obligation of control, in principle, the following costs are covered: the costs of killing animals and disposal of their carcasses, disposal of feed, cleaning and disinfection of a farm, as well as compensation for animals killed or slaughtered by instruction of the Veterinary Inspection authorities, destroyed feed and – possibly – destroyed equipment which cannot be disinfected.

Financing of the tasks carried out by the Veterinary Inspectorate is provided from budgetary funds planned in annual budget laws. With regard to the infectious animal diseases identified at EU level, specific costs incurred as part of controlling these diseases are reimbursed from the European Union’s budget.

In conjunction with the occurrence of ASF, in the territory of the country, as part of the Rural Development Programme for 2014-2020 (RDP 2014-2020), the aid for pig producers was also envisaged for:

  • investments to protect farms against the introduction of the ASF virus (“Investments to prevent the destruction of the agricultural production potential”),
  • cessation of pig production and development of other agricultural activities (“Restructuring of small farms” and “Investments restoring the agricultural production potential”) or non-agricultural activities (“Bonuses for starting non-agricultural activities”).

As part of the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, farmers can benefit from support for investments to prevent the spread of ASF, as well as apply for reimbursement of the costs of investments related to restoring the production potential damaged, inter alia, due to the spread of diseases.

Within the framework of EU-funded programmes, actions were planned which are aimed, on the one hand, at providing investment support to farmers with regard to prevention of, inter alia, the spread of animal and plant diseases and, on the other hand, at providing support with regard to insurance of farms against losses in the production potential as a result of the spread of diseases.