The last decades have seen an increasing pressure on biodiversity in agricultural lands. The farmer plays a crucial role in maintaining biodiversity. However, opinions on systems of rating or rewarding of farmers for their performance in biodiversity management are divided. A study was conducted to elucidate the opinions of stakeholders of agricultural production on what would be proper indicators with which to rate a farmer's performance in stimulating biodiversity on his property. Four different stakeholders were chosen to express their opinions: farmers' organizations, nature conservation organizations, governmental organizations and food companies. Thirty different indicators were presented to the stakeholders and these indicators were grouped in three different categories: "A farmer's effort in nature management", "The preconditions necessary to obtain an enhanced performance" and "The attained nature results". By grading the thirty indicators, we found the revealed preferences for these three categories. In addition, in a stated preferences test the chain parties were asked to rank the three categories in importance. The results show clear differences between the revealed and stated preferences of stakeholders to indicator types. This indicates that the stakeholders have opinions about the indicator categories that do not conform to their stated preferences. Furthermore, the revealed preferences test shows consistently high ratings for the indicator groups "preconditions" and "nature results", with a significant difference between those indicators groups and the "effort" group. Both results should be taken into account in the design of rating systems. Our study suggests that a rating system based on the preconditions necessary to obtain an enhanced performance and the attained biodiversity results will be experienced as most acceptable throughout the chain of agricultural production.
|Journal||Aspects of Applied Biology|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|