Could Vojvodina really feed half of Europe?

Foto: Unsplash

taut was valid for the main granary during the period of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (1804-1867), a Novi Knjaževac for one of the capital cities where wheat was sold.

Breeding and hop production gained great popularity during the Austrian rule. Namely, the first hop gardens in this area were owned by Count Andrej Hadik in 1770, and in 1885 the process of developing the center of Vojvodina hop growing began thanks to the influence of the Slovak teacher from Padina, Albert Marchis, who grew this grain.

Agricultural capacity of Vojvodina today encompasses more than a million and a half hectares of arable land according to the Development Agency of Vojvodina (RAV), which makes up 90% of its territory – this fact indicates a huge potential in organic production food that would encourage the development of local and strengthening the state economy.

In today’s press that deals with agriculture, as well as on online portals such as agricultural magazineit is often pointed out that Vojvodina, with its high quality raw material base, would be independent could “feed” half the population of Europe.

In the continuation of the text, we will browse in more detail and examine the history of the development of the agricultural industry in Vojvodina in order to get to know the true production capacity of this province.

Vojvodina in the Habsburg and Austrian monarchies – the beginning of flourishing agriculture

Many historians believe that it is Habsburg Monarchy (later the Austrian Empire and finally the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy) credited with the beginning of a more modern development of agriculture in Vojvodina. Although it is widely known that the population has been involved in this industry since ancient times, even during the Ottomans and Romans, experts almost unanimously agree that industrialization during this period was a key moment for achieving prosperity.

The area of ​​today’s Vojvodina was the foundation for the development of Austrian industry, because that epoch was marked by the opening of the first factories for food processing.

U Sombor will be founded in 1905 Association of Bačka hop growersand in Vojvodina until before the First World War there was an eye 1200 ha of hop gardens (so-called “Golden age” Vojvodina hop-growing lasted from 1920 to 1927).

Farming during this period it also began to gradually develop and modernize. Throughout the 19th century, wetlands were drained and forests cleared, which significantly contributed to the increase in the percentage of arable land. Winemaking has flourished thanks to the implementation of new technology, and vines have been successfully grown on Frushka Goranorth Bačke i South Banat.

Cattle breeding i pig farming were the most important branches of animal husbandry in that period, and over time they insisted on breeding sheepprimarily because at that time the need for wool was enormous.

Vojvodina and agriculture during Yugoslavia

After the Great War in 1918, Serbia was formed Kingdom Serbs, Croats i Slovenians as a moss agricultural land. However, implementing a consistent agar policy was a very difficult undertaking because certain areas of the country were at different stages of development due to different economic and political conditions.

Vojvodina
Photo: Unplush

The improvement of agriculture was in the background, and this industry has suffered a lot since it was the main source of state revenue. The processing agricultural industry was underdeveloped, despite the high agar potential of the state – the technical base was outdated in relation to European countries, with a scarce industry for the production of agricultural machinery, fertilizers and protective equipment.

The agar policy of that time was primarily based on the development of this economic branch through a huge number rural farms who had relatively small estates in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, which is why the so-called agar overpopulation i the emergence of a surplus of cheap forces – This was such a problem that it was often more profitable to use labor than to invest in better quality processing machines, which significantly set back the progress of the state.

The Ministry of Agriculture did not classify a specific strategy until its adoption Law for the Advancement of Agriculture of 1929. years which involved performing land reclamation (a set of measures to improve the physical, biological and chemical properties of the soil for the sake of stable and correct cultivation of plants), systematic flood defenses i protection against plant and livestock diseases. However, inadequate implementation of the law, as well as agar reforms, led to even greater problems and material destruction, which will mark the period during the Second World War.

After the war, it was conceived Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, as an integral part of the Republic of Serbia. As such, it was under rule People’s Liberation Army (NOV).

In the period from 1944 to 1953, communist agricultural policy in Vojvodina encountered repression and resistance in the countryside. The biggest problems were policy of forced purchase of agricultural products i policy of collectivization of agricultural land.

At that time, every third rural family owned up to a maximum of 2.8 hectares of land, which was not enough for food, let alone for the production of surplus for export.

The first phase of new agriculture after the war involved the resettlement of villages, so the number of agricultural holdings increased significantly, but the area was still small. There is a hypothesis that this massive increase in small holdings was tactically planned so that later these peasants would be forced to join the cooperative, but there is no archival evidence for that.

Exactly in 1950, about 117,000 households were connected to one agricultural community, whose land holdings amounted to about 690,000 hectares, or 40% of the arable land of Vojvodina.

Only during 70-ih i 80-ih In the last century, agriculture has significantly improved and Vojvodina has gained an enviable status in the agricultural world, with some of the most developed industrial centers – Zrenjanin, Subotica, Sombor i Novi Sad were at the forefront of production corn, wheat, sunflower, tobacco and the like.

Agriculture in Vojvodina today – modern requirements of agriculture

Out of the entire economy of the country, agriculture has recorded the highest growth in the last few years. Despite that, the thesis and unrealistic expectations that Vojvodina itself has the capacity to feed half of Europe are constantly being pushed forward.

Statistics indicate that Serbia accounts for 0.8% of land in Europe, and Vojvodina 0.5% – Many European countries have a longer tradition in agriculture, but also higher domestic demand for quality products. In addition, one of the main differences is that European countries are investing drastically more in research and finding technological solutions in order to constantly make progress in this field.

Technological trends do not only mean the improvement of food production machines, but also innovations in applications that use satellite imagery, green sensors, weather forecasting, food packaging (such as biodegradable materials, recycled papers, etc.).

These new technologies require serious financial investments in which the whole society participates through economic support to institutes dealing with science. Global, private, investments in the research in question account for 20% of total investments.

Serbia is not able to change the course of the world market, but can only join the trends in agricultural culture and thus improve its own agriculture. She is the largest food producer in CEFTA region (Free Trade Agreement in the Balkans), with the largest share in the production of industrial plants and fruits, as well as corn and wheat.

We hope that this text was useful to you, as well as informative, and that we managed to shed light on some myths related to the productive agricultural capacity of Vojvodina, but also to point out its inexhaustible agar potential.


Source: Bolja Zemlja by www.boljazemlja.com.

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