The present study proposes some points of reflection on the issue of mountain farming and offers an assessment on the support of the European Union to the less favoured agricultural areas (lfa). Specifically, the case study, referring to Rural Development Program 2007-2013 of Lombardy Region, wants to contribute to the debate on the evaluation of the effects of the interventions financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development in the mountainous territories. For this purpose, we have used a methodological estimation approach called "fair compensation", which is based on Farm Accountancy Data Network data. In mountain areas, agricultural and rural activities are of considerable importance and, even if they have been observed in contraction for years, these activities remain the only ones able to ensure the agricultural stay and the control of the rural territory less favoured. From this point of view, the Union legislation, from the years 70 to the last century, has proposed compensatory interventions, depending on the higher costs and the lower revenues, due to the natural handicaps and constraints imposed by the environment, also in terms of choices of production techniques. On another end, by compensating the farmers for lower income they derive from farming, the lfa schemes are designed to maintain agriculture and population in rural areas. The study intends to analyse the application of compensatory allowances, in mountain areas, above all, as happened in the past, in terms of economic, and therefore social, repercussions on the beneficiary enterprises. By using the methodology of the so-called "fair indemnification", the regional case study therefore intends to answer a specific question: to what extent has the intervention been able to provide adequate income compensation for natural handicaps and to foster Continuation of agricultural activities?
Keywords: Rural Development Programme, less favoured areas, compensatory allowance, mountain areas
Jel Code: Q01, O18
Roberto Cagliero, Rita Iacono, Francesco Licciardo, Tiziana Prandi, Novella Rossi, in "ECONOMIA AGRO-ALIMENTARE" 3/2018, pp. 479-501, DOI:10.3280/ECAG2018-003011