Horticulture and vegetable farming

2015 horticultural survey

For the reference date of 1 July 2015, a horticultural survey (together with a field vegetable cultivation survey) was carried out. Compared to the previous survey in 2010 - carried out within the framework of the agricultural census 2010 - the area under horticultural use decreased by 181 ha or 8.4% to 1 963 ha. The number of holdings also declined by 15.1% to 1 200 holdings (2010: 1 414 holdings).

An analysis of the distribution of land under horticultural use in the individual Länder (federal provinces) shows that the largest proportions of cultivated area are found in Upper Austria with 519 ha (26.4%), Lower Austria (398 ha; 20.2%), closely followed by Vienna (382 ha; 19.5%) and Styria (338 ha; 17.2%). Horticultural area increased marginally in Burgenland (+18 ha), Salzburg (+11 ha) and Tyrol (+3 ha), but decreased in all the remaining Länder.

Cultivated areas under glass and plastics showed a decline to 496 ha (-9 ha) compared with 2010 (505 ha). While the largest decrease was recorded in Vienna with -23 ha, the Länder Carinthia, Upper Austria, Styria and Vorarlberg showed a decline of about 1 ha only. Cultivated areas under glass increased in Burgenland (+5 ha), Lower Austria (+7 ha), Salzburg (+3 ha) and Tyrol (+2 ha).

In open land (incl. flat film/fleece, etc. and tree nurseries) a minus of 10.5% compared with 2010 was observed, concerning the Länder Lower Austria (-125 ha; -28.3%), Upper Austria (-64 ha; -11.6%) and Styria (-22 ha; -8.1%) being primarily responsible for this decline. However, open land area in Vienna increased by 11.0% (+22 ha), in Burgenland by 41.6% (+12 ha) and in Salzburg by 17.3% (+7 ha).

Although the number of holdings with a cultivated area under 1 ha decreased by 16.7% to 821 holdings (2010: 986 holdings), horticulture continued to be practised on a fairly small scale in 2015. While the largest decline was observed in the number of holdings less than 0.25 ha (-14.7%), the smallest decline was recorded in the number of holdings with 5 ha or more (-2.7%).

As in the survey 2010, the majority of holdings (624) focused on the production of “flowers and ornamental plants” with an area of 375 ha (19.1% of the total area), followed by the production of “vegetables” (376 holdings, with a share of 31.7% of the total area) and “tree nurseries” (200 holdings, with a share of 49.2% of the total area).

2015 field vegetable cultivation survey

For the reference date of 1 July 2015, a field vegetable cultivation survey (together with a horticultural survey) was carried out. 1 870 holdings were counted, which meant a decrease by 92 holdings (-4.7%) in comparison to the last survey in 2010. At the same time the cultivated area increased by 22.7% to 13 995 ha compared to 2010.

An analysis of the distribution of field vegetable cultivation area in federal provinces shows that more than half of this area (9 226 ha; +28.7%) was once again located in Lower Austria, followed by Upper Austria (1 561 ha; +19.6%) and Burgenland, in spite of a loss of area (1 029 ha; -14.7%). Increases were also recorded in Carinthia (181 ha; +70.1%), Styria (1 007 ha; +45.4%), Tyrol (650 ha; +17.5%) and Vorarlberg (64 ha; +25.9%), while cultivated area decreased as already mentioned in Burgenland, but also in Salzburg (-17.0%) and Vienna (-13.1%).

The cultivated area under glass and plastics dropped by 16.2% to 92 ha compared to the last survey in 2010. Around 80% of the total area – despite a decrease in both Länder – is found in Burgenland (44 ha; -11.5%) and Styria (31 ha; -18.2%). Crop growing under glass or plastics plays a secondary role in the remaining Länder. Outdoor field vegetables are primarily grown in Lower Austria (9 220 ha), Upper Austria (1 555 ha) and Burgenland (986 ha). The cultivated area in Austria increased by 23.1% to 13 904 ha compared to 2010.

The trend towards larger cultivated areas is illustrated by the increase in the number of holdings with a total area of 5 ha and more. While in 2010, 652 holdings were recorded in this size category with a total area of 9 385 ha, there was an increase of 140 holdings to 792 holdings and a growth of 2 726 ha to 12 111 ha in 2015. Thus these holdings account for around 86.5% of the total field vegetable cultivation area (+29.1%). By contrast, there was a fairly even distribution of smaller holding sizes in field vegetable cultivation: 127 holdings cultivated less than 0.25 ha, 150 holdings between 0.25 to less than 0.5 ha, 175 holdings between 0.5 to less than 1 ha, 210 holdings between 1 to less than 2 ha, 159 holdings between 2 to less than 3 ha and 257 holdings between 3 to less than 5 ha.

With 3 175 ha (21.4% of the total vegetable cultivation area), onions led once again the field, followed by green peas with 2 002 ha (13.5%) and carrots with 1 768 ha (11.9%). Among vegetables grown under contract, on the other hand, green peas were the most frequently cultivated with 1 741 ha, followed by sweet maize with 510 ha, carrots with 448 ha and spinach with 324 ha.

Vegetable Farming 2015: Holdings, vegetables area
Vegetable Farming 2015: Cultivated areas
Vegetable Farming 2010: Holdings, vegetables area
Vegetable Farming 2010: Cultivated areas
Horticulture 2015: Horticultural area
Horticulture 2010: Horticultural area

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