Poland – CAP National Strategic Plan
In Poland, rural and agricultural areas occupy 85% and 52% of the country, respectively. Rural areas are inhabited by approximately 15 million people, 38% of Poland’s total population. There are approximately 1.4 million farms throughout the country. The main sectors are dairy, cereals, pigs, poultry and horticulture. Agriculture in Poland is characterized by a large share of farms of small economic size and there are significant income disparities. The Polish Strategic Plan of the Common Agricultural Policy will support sustainable development of farms, the processing sector and improvement of living and working conditions in small rural areas. The NSP will support as well, sustainable, climate and environmentally friendly farming methods that protect water, soil and air, and biodiversity. It will encourage sustainable energy production and use. Economic diversity will be enhanced, including the bioeconomy. Scientific and innovative solutions, including digital solutions, will be disseminated and implemented, removing barriers to development in rural areas.
The budget for the strategic plan in Poland is more than €25 billion for 2023-2027, of which more than €17 billion is allocated to direct payments after the transfer of 30% from the second pillar. The allocation of the second pillar is about 8 billion euros. Since the “tools that improve farmers’ income are direct payments”, the Polish government decided to strengthen it by transferring funds from Pillar II to Pillar I.
Basic Income Support and Redistributive Payment
Approximately €8 Billion is planned for Basic income support for 2023-2027 which accounts for 47.36% of the direct payment envelope.
Estimated rate is approx. 118 EUR/ha.
Payment reduction (capping) will not be applied.
In the case of Poland, priority in supporting agricultural activity under the Strategic Plan is given to small and medium-sized farms with an area of up to 25-30 hectares. Therefore, the redistributive payment is intended for farms with an area of up to 50 hectares, but support will be paid up to a maximum of 30 hectares – i.e. farms with an area of 30 hectares will benefit most (in terms of average payment per hectare on a farm) from this type of payment. A total of approximately 2 billion euros is planned for the redistributive payment between 2023 and 2027, representing 11.57% of the direct payments envelope. Estimated rate approx. 44 EUR/ha. Maximum rate approx. 48.5 EUR/ha.
The green architecture
The green architecture of the Polish NSP establishes a number of measures in both pillars to encourage farmers to adopt pro-environmental farming practices. Most significantly, in Pillar I, eco-schemes are voluntary payment schemes for farmers who implement environmentally and climate beneficial practices that go beyond the requirements established by cross-compliance. This tool is designed to realize environmental benefits to the greatest extent possible, while encouraging farmers to actively engage in the implementation of environmental and climate protection measures.
In the Polish NSP, it is estimated the payment values of each eco-scheme per hectare, through an estimate of how many farmers will be interested to join each eco-scheme. Obviously, the figure may change depending on the number of adherents. In the Polish NSP, the planned eco-schemes are:
– Mixing manure on arable land within 12 hours of application Estimated rate: 89,44 Euro/ha.
– Application of liquid manure by methods other than splashing Estimated rate: 65,39 Euro/ha.
–Maintenance of mid-field afforestation Estimated rate: 560,45 Euro/ha.
-Maintenance of agro-forestry systems It is estimated that approximately 3.9 thousand ha will be covered by the support.
-Simplified farming system The aim of this eco-scheme is to support conservation tillage, to preserve natural resources while achieving satisfactory yields. Estimated rate: 125.62 Euro/ha.
-Winter catch crops/intercrops Estimated rate: 176,63 Euro/ha.
-Water retention on permanent grassland Estimated rate: 63,15 Euro/ha.
– 7% of the farm’s land to non-productive areas Estimated rate: 19,10 Euro/ha.
-Organic farming (Different estimated rates depending of crops, for example: Berry crops, 560,67 EUR/ha, Extensive orchard crops: 297.98 EUR/ha).
-Diversified cropping pattern Estimated rate: 76,18 Euro/ha.
– System of Integrated Plant Production Estimated rate: 292,13 Euro/ha.
-Development of and adherence to a fertilization plan Estimated Rate 28,99 Euro/ha.
-Biological crop protection Estimated rate: 89,89 Euro/ha
-Areas with melliferous plants Estimated rate: 269,21 Euro/ha.
-Animal Welfare Estimated rate varies greatly depending on practices and animal
–Density of grassland animals Estimated rate: 188,31 Euro/ha.
Pillar II multi-year pro-environmental commitments are the most ambitious element of the Polish CAP’s green architecture. The requirements for these actions go beyond cross-compliance and relevant national and EU legislation and do not overlap with the range of practices covered by ecoschemes. They will be voluntary for the farmer.
The planned multi-year agro-climatic-environmental interventions are, among others: Protection of valuable habitats and endangered species in Natura 2000 areas ; Preservation of valuable habitats and endangered species outside Natura 2000 areas ; Extensive use of meadows and pastures in Natura 2000 areas ; Preservation of orchards of traditional varieties of fruit trees ; Multi-year flower strips; Conservation of plant genetic resources in agriculture,Conservation of endangered animal genetic resources in agriculture ; Young orchards of traditional varieties. Other interventions that will meet environmental and climate objectives will be the interventions on forests and woodlands. These will be investments that help mitigate climate change and maintain and improve the ecological stability of forest areas, linking, among other things, fragmented forest complexes into compact and continuous landscape structures, the so-called ecological corridors. The creation of afforestation, tree plantations, and agroforestry systems will have a significant impact on water retention in the soil profile and improved water quality. It will also contribute to increased biodiversity in rural areas, as trees and shrubs provide habitat for many organisms and a food base for, for example, birds and pollinating insects.
The Polish NSP provides the maximum rate for coupled payments, which is 15%. The sectors that will receive the coupled payment are: Cow; young cattle; sheep; goat; sugar beet; hops; flax; fibre hemp; strawberries; tomatoes; starch potatoes; fodder crops; grain legumes.
The strategic plan provides investment support for start-ups under Pillar 2 and up to five years of support for young farmers’ farm acreage under Pillar 1.
Although the age structure of farmers in Poland is favorable compared to other EU member states, the share of young farmers in the total number of farm managers is declining, as in other EU member states. A total of approximately €185.3 million is planned for Pillar I payments between 2023 and 2027, representing 1.07% of the direct payments envelope.