Anticipating the Future of Finnish Agrifood Sector by Using Alternative Research Methods
Huan-Niemi, Ellen; Niemi, Jyrki; Rikkonen, Pasi; Wuori, Olli; Niemi, Janne (2017)
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Taylor & Francis
The goal of this study is to forecast the future of the Finnish agri-food sector for decision makers and interest groups in order to support the process of policy planning and decision making in a changing EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) combined with alterations in the global agricultural, trade, and climate policy. Two methods are utilized concurrently in this study—the quantitative method based on a computable general equilibrium model called the GTAP (Global Trade Analysis Project) and the Delphi method based on panels of expert opinions. The quantitative “what if” GTAP modeling is used to forecast the Finnish agri-food sector until 2030, while the qualitative Delphi method with panels of experts is used to foresee the short- and long-term developments in the Finnish agri-food sector. The results from both methods can provide a more complete picture and comprehensive understanding of the future. The GTAP model projects that the relative competitiveness of Finnish milk, cereal, and meat production would decrease and weaken in the EU market as subsidies are being removed and the markets become open and liberated. The interviewed experts in the food supply chain confirm this projection by foreseeing a further decrease in the overall consumption of food that is produced domestically in Finland, and thus the profitability of Finnish farms would weaken and remain low. The results from both methods paint a pessimistic future for the Finnish agri-food sector in the event of trade liberalization and abolition of subsidies for agriculture.
Agricultural policy, Delphi method, Finnish agri-food sector, future, GTAP model