methods, notes and classification Labour force: number of persons and farm work (AWU) by type of farming (2-digit) and economic size of farm (ESU) methods, notes and classification


Agricultural statistics

Agricultural statistics were initially designed to monitor the main objectives of the Common Agricultural Policy, e.g. the production and supply of agricultural products and income in the agricultural sector. Today, agricultural statistics cover topics as diverse as

* farm structure,  
* utilisation of farming land,  
* labour input,  
* production,  
* supply/use,  
* prices and the  
* composition of agricultural income.  

Comprehensive information is available at both a national level and a regional level.

During the last 10-15 years new objectives have been introduced in relation to agricultural policy. These include

* protection of the environment,  
* sustainable farming practices,  
* food safety and security, and  
* animal welfare,as well as  
* broader perspectives relating to rural development.   

New indicators and statistics have been developed to provide information relating to these topics, for example, data relating to the use and impact of pesticides and nutrients. Another important priority in agricultural statistics has been to establish statistics that allow the evolution of organic farming to be followed.


Economic accounts for agriculture

The agricultural accounts, a satellite to National Accounts, show detailed results of the income generated by agricultural activities over a given accounting period. Values for output, input, subsidies and taxes are available in current and constant prices. Furthermore, indices for the developments are shown. A main indicator is the real net value added at factor cost (Factor income) of agriculture per total annual work unit. Data are published in December (1st estimate for the year n), March (2nd estimate for the year n-1) and October (final data for the year n-1)

Structure of agricultural holdings

This summarises the main data in the Eurofarm database and contains the results of Community surveys on the structure of agricultural holdings, i.e. labour force, size of holdings, land use, livestock, subsistence farming. This domain also contains the main indicators on the structure of agricultural holdings by region.

Agricultural prices and price indices (EU and candidate countries)

This domain contains quarterly and annual data on agricultural price indices (2005=100) and annual data on absolute prices and agricultural land prices and rents. The agricultural price statistics provide information on the development of producer prices of agricultural products (output) as well as of the purchase prices (input) of the goods and services consumed by agriculture in the production process. Price indices data are available for single commodities and for larger aggregates at the country and EU level.

Agricultural products

This domain includes data shown in physical units (number, weight, quantity):

* land use, annual data;  
* livestock (number and structure), annual data;  
* crop production (area, yield, production), annual data;  
* meat, milk and milk products production and activity of hatcheries (incubation and trade), monthly and annual data; summary data (balance sheets), annual data.  

The countries concerned are the EU-27, candidate countries (Turkey) and other countries (Albania, countries from the former Yugoslavia, Norway).

Orchards survey

This domain contains data on the plantations of seven species of fruit trees: dessert apples, dessert pears, peaches, apricots, oranges, lemons and small-fruited citrus fruits; certain information is also available on cooking apples and cooking pears. The results referring to the characteristics of these species are: age classes, density and varieties, which are recorded per country and production zone.

Vineyard survey

This database contains the results of surveys of areas under vines (basic, every 10 years, and intermediate, annually) carried out by Member States with at least 500 ha under vines in the open air (Germany, Greece, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Portugal, Spain, Austria and the United Kingdom) in accordance with Council Regulation (EEC) No 357/79 of February 1979. The aim is to assess the situation and developments in the grape-growing sector in the European Union.

Organic farming

‘Organic farming’ can be defined as a method of production which places the highest emphasis on environmental protection and, with regard to livestock production, animal welfare considerations. It avoids or largely reduces the use of synthetic chemical units such as fertilisers, pesticides, additives and medicinal products. It has to be understood as a part of a sustainable farming system and a viable alternative to the more traditional approaches to agriculture.

The database contains a set of summary tables intended to provide an overview of the situation regarding organic farming within the European Economic Area. It includes the number of certified operators (producers, transformers and importers), fully converted and under conversion organic agricultural area and organic livestock. The statistical information contained in the database refers only to organic farming practices that comply with EU legislation.

Regional Agriculture statistics

For the regional level, data are available for economic accounts, land use, animal population, crop production and milk production. The information may be less detailed than the figures for the whole country.

Farm structure

What is available

The Farm structure statistics provide harmonised data on agricultural holdings in the EU, including:

* Number of agricultural holdings  
* Land use and area (crops)  
* Livestock  
* Main crops  
* Farm Labour Force (including age, gender and relationship to the holder)   
* Economic size of the holdings  
* Type of activity  
* Other gainful activity on the farm  
* System of farming  
* Machinery  
* Organic farming   
Uses of the data

The purpose of the Farm structure surveys is to obtain reliable data, at regular intervals, on the structure of agricultural holdings in the European Union in order to:

* Assess the agricultural situation across the EU  
* Monitor trends and transitions in the structure of European farms (agricultural holdings)  
* Manage, evaluate and design the Common Agricultural Policy in its environmental, economical and social aspects.   

FSS data is also used in other policy areas such as environment, regional development and climate change.

Frequency of the surveys
* Every ten years, a full scope survey is carried out in the form of an agricultural census.  
* The Agricultural Census 2010 took place in EU Member States. The data are currently under validation process and the first validated results are published in the database. Provisional results for all countries are available in Statistics Explained: Agricultural census 2010 - provisional results  
* Every 2 or 3 years, between the censuses, sample surveys are carried out. 

The last sample survey was carried out in 2007. See results in the database.

Ad-hoc tables

Ad-hoc tables

Ad-hoc tables can be built for special requests.

Example: agricultural holders by age in the specialist dairying farms

Indeed, not all the information available is online:

* The survey collects 1 record per farm;  
* For each record there is over 200 variables collected; 

from all this information a bit less than 100 tables were designed and are available online in the database.

List of characteristics

See Annex III of Regulation 1166/2008 on farm structure surveys and the survey on agricultural production methods

Historical results

Farm structure - Historical results - Surveys from 1966/67 to 1997 (PDF)

"This publication is intended to give the reader a picture of changes in the structure of agricultural holdings, in terms of land use, livestock, the labour force and types of farming."

Agricultural production

What is available

Agricultural production data refers to vegetable and animal production that is made available for human consumption and animal feed.

Crop production data include:

* cereals   
* main crops (dried pulses and protein crops, root crops, industrial crops, plants harvested green)  
* vegetables, melons and strawberries  
* permanent crops (fruits, olive trees and vineyards)  
* agricultural land use for utilised agricultural area (arable land, permanent crops, permanent grassland, …)   

and refer to:

* areas under cultivation (cereals and main crops), (expressed in 1 000 hectares),  
* harvested areas (vegetables), (expressed in 1 000 hectares),  
* production area (permanent crops) (expressed in 1 000 hectares),  
* harversted production (expressed in 1 000 tonnes) and  
* yield per hectare (expressed in 100 kg/hectare)   

Animal production data cover:

* bovine animals  
* sheep  
* goats   
* pigs  
* poultry  

And refer to:

* livestock (expressed in number of animals)  
* slaughtering (expressed in number of animals and tonnes)  
* milk and dairy production (quantities produced and used on farm and in dairies)  
* production of eggs for hatching  
* trade of chicks   
Uses of the data

Agricultural production data are used to define policy measures as diverse as:

* Analysing developments in agricultural markets and how they respond to policy actions;  
* Ensuring quality in food and animal feed  
* Promotion of farm products  
* Ensuring animal welfare and health  
* Actions in case of serious animal diseases or human health risk due to agricultural products.  

This data reflects the large diversity of agricultural products that are made available for consumption. Agricultural products are an important part of the cultural identity of European citizens and regions.

Agricultural production data can answer questions such as:
* What are the main crops harvested in the European Union?  
* How much milk is produced for consumption?   
* How is evolving the meat production from different cattle categories?  
* What is the share of cereal production between the Member States?  
* How is the agricultural land used in the Member States?  
* What are the shares of arable land and permanent crops?  
* Which European regions produce the goat and ewe milk?  


Structure of agricultural holdings
* [Structure of agricultural holdings - metadata][3]  
* [National methodological reports][4] 
Economic Accounts for Agriculture
* [Economic Accounts for Agriculture - metadata][5]
Agricultural prices and price indices
* [Selling prices of agricultural products (absolute prices), land prices and rents][6]  
* [Price indices of agricultural products][7] 
Agricultural production
* [Agricultural production data - Methodological notes][8]  
* [Crops products: areas and productions][9]  
* [Crops products: supply balances sheets][10]  
* [Livestock and meat][11] 
Structure of orchards and vineyards
* [Orchard][12]  
* [Vineyard ][13]


The following list presents the main legal acts relating to agricultural statistics. For more information, please consult EUR-Lex.

Farm Structure

Up to FSS 2007 (consolidated texts)

* [Council Regulation (EEC) No 571/88 of 29 February 1988 on the organization of Community surveys on the structure of agricultural holdings][14]  
* [Commission Decision (EC) No 115/2000 of 24 November 1999 relating to the definitions of the characteristics, the list of agricultural products, the exceptions to the definitions and the regions and districts regarding the surveys on the structure of agricultural holdings][15]  
* [Commission Decision of 7 June 1985 establishing a Community typology for agricultural holdings (85/377/EEC)][16]  

FSS 2010 onwards

* [Commission Regulation (EC) No 1200/2009 of 30 November 2009 implementing Regulation (EC) No 1166/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council on farm structure surveys and the survey on agricultural production methods, as regards livestock unit coefficients and definitions of the characteristics][17]  
* [Regulation (EC) No 1166/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 November 2008 on farm structure surveys and the survey on agricultural production methods and repealing Council Regulation (EEC) No 571/88][18]  
* [Commission Regulation (EC) No 1242/2008 of 8 December 2008 establishing a Community typology for agricultural holdings][19]   
Economic accounts for agriculture
* [Regulation (EC) No 138/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 December 2003 on the economic accounts for agriculture in the Community][20] 
Cereals and other crop products
* [Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council (EC) No 543/2009 of 29 June 2009 concerning crop statistics and repealing Council Regulations (EEC) 837/90 and (EEC) 959/93][21] 
Poultry farming
* [Commission Regulation (EC) No. 617/2008 of 27 June 2008 laying down detailed rules for implementing Regulation (EC) No. 1234/2007 as regards marketing standards for eggs for hatching and farmyard poultry chicks][22] 
Milk and milk products
* [Council Directive No 96/16/EC of 19 March 1996 on statistical surveys of milk and milk products][23]  
* [Commission Decision No 97/80/EC of 18 December 1996 laying down provisions for the implementation of Council Directive No 96/16/EC on statistical surveys of milk and milk products ][24]
Animal production
* [Regulation (EC) No 1165/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 November 2008 concerning livestock and meat statistics and repealing Council Directives 93/23/EEC, 93/24/EEC and 93/25/EEC ][25]
Wine market
* [Commission Regulation (EC) No 1282/2001 of 28 June 2001 laying down detailed rules for the application of Council Regulation (EC) No 1493/1999 as regards the gathering of information to identify wine products and to monitor the wine market and amending Regulation (EC) No 1623/2000 ][26]

DATA_DESCR The domain EUROFARM (ef)ácontains information (statistical tables) on structure of agricultural holdings collected through agricultural structure surveys. The data of the domain have been organised into two collections: Results of the farm structure surveys contains data from 1990 onwards Standard Gross Margin (SGM) and Standard Output (SO)ácoefficients. Farm Structure Survey data are used to collect information on agricultural holdings in the Member States at different geographic levels (Member States, regions, districts) and over periods (follow up the changes in agricultural sector), thus provide a base for decision making in the Common Agricultural Policy. Two kinds of Farm Structure Survey (FSS) are carried out by Member States: a basic survey (full scope Agricultural Census - AC) every 10 years, several sample based intermediate surveys between them. However for certain characteristics the Member States may use sample base for every survey. The calendar for the surveys to be held in all Member States is agreed by the Agricultural Statistics Committee of the European Commission. For a given survey year, Member States have to conduct their surveys within the agreed time-frame, thus all the data are as comparable as possible. The FSS are organised in all Member States on a harmonised base. Whereas the characteristics are based on community legislation, the same data are available for all countries in case of each survey. The variables are arranged into four groups: one general overview with the key variables, and three specialized ones containing detailed data on land use livestock special interest topics: farm labour force, rural development issues as well as management and practices. The scope of the survey is agriculture, while the survey unit is the agricultural holding. The data on individual agricultural holdings are collected by all Member States and sent to Eurostat. The aggregated results are disseminated through statistical tables. Data for basic surveys are available in a three-level geographical breakdown of the whole country, the regions and the district; while data for intermediate surveys are only available upon the two-levels of country and regions. Since FSS 1999/2000 information about local farm location is collected in most countries, so that the data can also be disseminated by NUTS and are robust regarding the changes in the NUTS definition. The FSS 2009/2010 information is inline with the NUTS 2010 classification: Regulation (EU) No 31/2001 amending the NUTS classification from January 2012. The Eurofarm domain does not cover the whole territory. So the land use data without link with other farm characteristics should be downloaded by the user from the relevant domain. Specific national data about rearing structure or agricultural labour force can be found in other domains, without link between the various productions at farm level. For a comprehensive description of the domain, please consult detailed structure (See annex at the bottom of the page).

CLASS_SYSTEM Detailed information on the typology system can be found in legislations: Commission Decision (EEC) No 377/85 of 7 June 1985 establishing a Community typology for agricultural holdings Commission Decision of 19 April 1988 fixing the agro-economic trend coefficient to be used for defining the European size unit in connection with the Community typology for agricultural holdings (88/284/EEC) Commission Decision of 13 June 1996 amending Decision No 85/377/EEC establishing a Community typology for agricultural holdings (96/393/EC) Commission Decision of 22 October 1999 amending Decision 85/377/EEC establishing a Community typology for agricultural holdings (1999/725/EC) Commission Decision of 16 May 2003 amending Decision 85/377/EEC establishing a Community typology for agricultural holdings (2003/369/EC) Commission Regulation of 8 December 2008 establishing a community typology for agricultural Holdings (2008/1242/EC) In the FSS 2010 and onward the typology classification will be done using Standard Output (SO) replacing Standard Gross Margin (SGM). The principles of botháconcepts are the same; it is the way they are calculated that differs. The main differences between SO and SGMá are: SO excludes direct payments; The fodder requirement in the case of some livestock characteristics is included in the calculation of the SO; The unit used to measureáis the euro and not the European Size Unit (ESU = 1200 euro) as the SGM classification.á see

STAT_CONC_DEF The main aim of the Community Farm Structure Surveys (FSS) is to provide a common list of characteristics observed using common rules (See annex at the bottom of the page) and procedures, thus ensuring the possibility of comparison of holding all over the European Union. As a result a complex statistical data set is established. Both the full censuses and the intermediate sample surveys areáaimed at producing a varietyáof information on specific CAP targets, as well as providing a basis for extrapolating Farm Accountancy Data Network (FADN) data. This tool is enough flexible for following the policy changes in agriculture. A set of characteristics (1166/2008)áand definitions (1200/2009)áare defined in legislationáof the EU (some exceptions are nevertheless recorded - See annex at the bottom of the page). The Community typology (See annex at the bottom of the page) means a uniform classification of the holdings in the EU based on their type of farming and their economic size. Both are determined on the basis of the standard gross margin (until 2007) or Standard output (from 2010 onward). For each crop or animal production, a standard gross margin (the difference between the standard value of the production and the standard amount of certain specific costs) or standard output (the average monetary value of the agricultural output at farm-gate price, in euro per hectare or per head of livestock) is calculated. The farm type is determined by the relative contribution of the different productions to the total standard gross margin/standard outputáof the holding. See also: á

STAT_UNIT The statistical unit observed is the agricultural holding (a single unit, both technically and economically, which has a single management and which produces agricultural products), which has: an utilised agricultural area of 1 ha or more (before 2010) andá5 ha or more (from 2010 onwards), an utilised agricultural area less than 1 ha if it market produce on a certain scale or if its production units exceed certain natural thresholds. See: Article 5 and 6 of Regulation (EEC) No 571/88 and Article 3 of Regulation (EC) No (1166/2008). Information regarding the following characteristics-groups is available for each unit. General information: location of the holding and farming system (organic farming, owner- or tenant farmed agricultural area). Management and farm labour force (See annex at the bottom of the page): all persons responsible for the holding and/or working on the holding. Land area and its utilisation: size and distribution of the land area of the holding, in particular the utilised agricultural area (arable land, kitchen gardens, permanent crops and meadows and pastures), as well as crops produced. Livestock: animals kept on the holding (cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, poultry, equidae and other animals). Machinery and equipments necessary to cultivate the land or manage the holding activity. Secondary activities (activities directly related to the holding using the resources and/or products of the holding) and agro-environmental aspects.

STAT_POP Target population is the universe of the agricultural holdings, however, Member States which use a different survey threshold commit themselves to fixing this threshold at a level excluding until FSS 2007: only the smallest holdings which together contribute 1 % or less to the total standard gross margin (SGM), within the meaning of Decision 85/377/EEC, for the Member State concerned (Article 6 ofáRegulation (EEC) No 571/88). from 2010 onwards: Member States which use a survey threshold above one hectare shall fix thisá threshold at a level that excludes only the smallest agricultural holdings which together contribute 2 %or less to the total utilised agricultural area excluding common land and 2 % or less to the total number of farm livestock units. In case of the basic surveys usually all holdings are observed, but there is a possibility to carry out the census on a sample base for certain characteristics. The intermediate surveys are conducted on a random sample base. In FSS 2009/2010 in some member states there was a change in the thresholds defining the minimumáUtilized Agricultural Area of the holding: Germany - threshold for minimum UAA changed from 2 to 5 ha. Czech Republic - threshold for minimum UAA changed fromá1 to 5 ha. United Kingdom - threshold for minimum UAA of 5 ha introduced for the first time.

REF_AREA European Union, Norway, Switzerland, Croatia.

BASE_PER The FSS data have been processed with SGM/SO coefficients from the following reference years (3-year average in the case of SGM and 5 year average in the case of SO). FSS SGM/SO 1989/90 1986 1993 1990 1995 1992 1997 1994 1999/2000 1996 2003 2000 2005 2002 2007 2004 2009/2010 2007

UNIT_MEASURE Two kinds of units are generally used: the units of measureáfor the characteristics (area in ha, livestock in heads or LSU, labour force in persons or AWU, etc.) and the number of agricultural holdings having this characteristic.

    • Economic size classes of holdings in European Size Unit (ESU)
      • 0 Total
      • 1 Less than 1 ESU
      • 2 From 1 to 1.9 ESU
      • 3 From 2 to 3.9 ESU
      • 4 From 4 to 7.9 ESU
      • 5 From 8 to 15.9 ESU
      • 6 From 16 to 39.9 ESU
      • 7 From 40 to 99.9 ESU
      • 8 From 100 to 249.9 ESU
      • 9 250 ESU or over
    • Farm type
      • 0 Total
      • 1 Specialist cereals, oilseed and protein crops (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 2 General field cropping (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 3 Specialist horticulture (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 4 Specialist vineyards (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 5 Specialist fruit and citrus fruit (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 6 Specialist olives (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 7 Various permanent crops combined (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 8 Specialist dairying (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • 9 Specialist cattle-rearing and fattening (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • a Cattle-dairying, rearing and fattening combined (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • b Sheep, goats and other grazing livestock (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • c Specialist granivores (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • d Mixed cropping (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • e Mixed livestock, mainly grazing livestock (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • f Mixed livestock, mainly granivores (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • g Field crops-grazing livestock combined (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • h Various crops and livestock combined (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
      • i Non-classifiable holdings (calculated with Standard Gross Margin)
    • Variable
      • 0 Male:Sole holders
      • 1 Female:Sole holders
      • 2 Sole holders
      • 3 Male:Spouses of sole holders
      • 4 Female:Spouses of sole holders
      • 5 Spouses of sole holders
      • 6 Male:Other family members of sole holders
      • 7 Female:Other family members of sole holders
      • 8 Other family members of sole holders:Labour force
      • 9 Male:Family members of sole holders:Labour force
      • a Female:Family members of sole holders:Labour force
      • b Family members of sole holders
      • c Male:Regular non family labour force
      • d Female:Regular non family labour force
      • e Regular non family labour force
      • f Labour force - non regular non family
      • g Labour force - regular
      • h Male:Regular labour force
      • i Female:Regular labour force
      • j Labour force - directly employed by the holding
      • k Labour force - not directly employed by the holding
    • Unit of measure
      • 0 Annual working unit (AWU)
      • 1 Persons
    • Geopolitical entity (reporting)
      • 0 Belgium
      • 1 Bulgaria
      • 2 Czech Republic
      • 3 Denmark
      • 4 Germany (until 1990 former territory of the FRG)
      • 5 Estonia
      • 6 Ireland
      • 7 Greece
      • 8 Spain
      • 9 France
      • a France (metropolitan)
      • b Italy
      • c Cyprus
      • d Latvia
      • e Lithuania
      • f Luxembourg
      • g Hungary
      • h Malta
      • i Netherlands
      • j Austria
      • k Poland
      • l Portugal
      • m Romania
      • n Slovenia
      • o Slovakia
      • p Finland
      • q Sweden
      • r United Kingdom
      • s Norway
      • t Switzerland