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Agricultural Policy

farm balesOur Agricultural Policy evidence and advice relates primarily to the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Our work covers: spatial, economic and environmental impacts of CAP payments; efficiency and sustainability of farm businesses; improving economic performance while reducing greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture; modelling of land use; the structure of Scottish Agriculture; farmer behaviour; innovation; and aspects of rural development.

Strategic Links

Agriculture Policy research contributes to the Scottish Government's Greener Scotland Strategic Objective and to two of the Strategic Priorities of the Economic Strategy; ‘Supportive Business Environment’ and 'Transition to a Low Carbon Economy’. The Scottish Government Land Use Strategy also informs the direction and approach to our research activities.

The research closely links to the Economic Adaptation Theme of the Scottish Government funded portfolio of Strategic Research through work on Common Agricultural Policy reform and adaptations that minimise the risks from climate change and transition to a low carbon rural economy. Research carried out within the Ecosystem Services and Land Use Themes is also relevant.

In addition, we work with Scotland’s Centre of Expertise on Climate Change (ClimateXChange) on topics related to climate change mitigation and adaptation.

We also fund research on the operation of agricultural markets and how they might respond to changes in agricultural policy. Along with Defra and the other Devolved Administrations, we fund the Food & Agriculture Policy Research Institute (FAPRI). The FAPRI-UK modelling system captures the relationships among variables affecting supply and demand in the main agricultural sectors of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Related Policy Areas

Our Agricultural Policy research provides evidence which underpins Scottish Government policy in Agriculture, Rural Policy, Natural Heritage Management and Land Use. It also assists delivery colleagues in the Rural Payments and Inspections Directorate.