Ecologization of agrarian production: modern challenges and perspectives of development

Decline in fertility of soils and quality of agricultural products. Necessity of wide introduction in practice of modern principles of ecologization of production. Proposal of a systematic solution of environmental problems in the agriculturalist sphere.

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Язык английский
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candidate of economic sciences, Head of the Department of land relations National Scientific Centre "Institute of Agrarian Economics"

Ecologization of agrarian production: modern challenges and perspectives of development


Scientific problem. The rapid deterioration of the ecological condition of natural resources used in agricultural production, reduction of soil fertility and quality of agricultural products, permanent strengthening of integral destructive impact on the environment establishes the need for widespread implementation in practice of modern management principles ecologization production. The desire of the mankind to meet the continuously growing demands came into conflict with the nature ability to self-recover and resource potential of the planet. The global community has recognized the fact that the global transformations in the biosphere have reached its critical proportions. This necessitates a radical revision of the existing methods of managing and developing the new approaches to the organization of human life, based on the principles of ecologization social production.

Analysis of recent researches and publications. The problems ecologization are researched Yu. Manin [1], D. Kardashov [2], V. Zalunin [3], N. Karmaev [4], G. Smyrnov [5], C. Lamine [6], G. Allaire, V. Fuzeau, O.Therond [7], M. Barbier [8], Deverre C. [9], L. Kupinets [10], O. Bigdan [11], Popova O. [12] and other.

The concept of "ecologization the economy" is not new. Background of modern understanding its nature of began to form in the 70's of the 20th century. The main researchers, mainly aimed at studying the problems ecologization of social production [1, 2], determining its sources and driving forces [3], the study of the role and importance of spiritual factors in ecologization the productive forces [4] and the ecologization of consciousness in the context of dialectical and historical materialism [5]. These studies have laid the philosophical and social basis of ecological production and became the starting point of forming new scientific knowledge as a synthesis of economic, natural and social sciences.

Currently, some authors choose an ambiguous approach to the study of ecological problems of agricultural production. Some of them note the existing environmental problems in agriculture and suggest its ecologization through systemic modernization and introduction of organic production [6], crop diversification [7], ecologization of agricultural sciences and technology [8]. The others suggest the ways and mechanisms of solving the problems of science and technology ecologization without revealing the factors that triggered their appearance [9, 10, 11, 12].

The objective of the article is to research backgrounds ecologization of production and propose a systemic solution of environmental problems in the agricultural sphere. The object of study is the process of production ecologiza- tion.

Statement of the main results of the study.

Ecologization is considered one of the most important requirements of modern times. The term has received many interpretations: the ecologiza- tion knowledge, science, economy, politics, ideology, manufacturing, certain industries and technologies. Total ecologization means systematic, multidisciplinary, comprehensive approach to the study of the objective world and more awareness of the role of nature in human life - that a new stage of ecological culture, ecological thinking, ecological behavior.

In a general sense ecologization is regarded as a process of conscious penetration environmental principles and approaches in economic relations and social phenomena. On the one hand it is an objectively determined process of transforming social work aimed at the preservation and development of socio-economic functions of nature, on the other - aimed at creation of ecologically safe for human living conditions. The ecologization of the economy should be seen as an important requirement of today. It proposes a more versatile and, at the same time, a more systematic approach to the definition of the objective reality of the relationship between social production and the environment. Ecolo- gization the public manufacturing activity in modern conditions provides the steadily growing influence of the environmental factor on production, its terms, contents and results, which increases the importance of developing the theoretical and methodological foundations of agricultural production ecologization. It should be recognized that presently there is a gap between the practice of management, economic policy and economic theory, both in terms of time and space. In this regard, the practical problems of ecologization, the use of adequate state regulators in the field of reproduction and consumption of vital goods in general and the ecologization of agricultural production in particular have not yet found an adequate theoretical understanding.

The diverse needs of the people and their interests are considered as the main reasons for sustained economic development of the mankind. The deeper nature of economic needs is revealed in the law of needs growth. An example of this law effect in the present conditions is that the number of different types of consumer goods and services is increasing in developed countries more than twice during each decade [13, p.17]. However, the planet's natural resources are finite and limited. According to the expert estimates published in the German magazine Frankfurter Rundschau in 2012, to reach the German welfare, the humanity needs the resource provision from 2.5 planets. In the case of needs satisfaction at the level of the U.S. population, already 4 planets are required [14].

The scientists suggest that if all countries in the world have tried to approach the standards of consumption in the developed countries using the existing and obsolescent technology, such an attempt would be restricted to the absolute limits of resources available to the society and this would lead to environmental disaster. In the global measurement, an increase in consumption, combined with population growth over the past 45 years, led to the growth of humanity needs more than twice [15, p. 10]. During the 20th century, the world population has increased 3.6 times (more than 4 billion people). For that period, the energy and raw material consumption has increased more than 10 times [16, p.57]. It requires a "fair and uncompromising critical analysis of business models underlying the global economy development..." and encourages the search for alternative economic development models that will provide "the saving nature development by man" [17, p. 8].

The current situation requires a reorientation of an obsolete economic paradigm to a qualitatively new level of production, which will take into account the natural potential of the planet and ensure a balanced development of the environmental, social and economic systems of production. According to many researchers, the financial and economic crisis of 2008-2009 marked the onset of a fundamentally new stage of the global economy development, the defining feature of which is the limitation of resources, especially energy and food, as well as the shortage of fresh water. fertility soil agricultural ecologization

Still, a decrease in productivity of agricultural lands, large-scale water pollution, intensive degradation of natural ecosystems (for the past 25 years, the proportion of degraded or irrationally used ecosystems reached 60%, and by 2050, this share could grow by 10%), a significant increase in the waste amount, and environment pollution is still an issue. Given the global nature of environmental issues, these challenges affect all countries, but it is expected that the greatest share of its burden will fall on the developing countries [18].

Today countries that have problems with food or countries that seek to contribute to their solution require not food but productive resources, especially land for its production. A significant amount of transnational integrated structures operating successfully in the agricultural sector of Ukraine are created with involvement of foreign capital and are focused exclusively at foreign markets.

The business of agricultural transnational corporations (ATCs) is aimed at the conquest of productive resources, capturing the distribution markets and profit earning. Quite often they are directly involved in the transfer of facilities which are environmentally harmful and dangerous to human health to the developing countries. Thus, in the 90s of the last century the massive growing of rape began in Ukraine. It is exported as raw materials mainly to Germany for the purpose of processing. These trends continue today. Besides rape depleting the soil, the sunflower production, which is also focused on export, is fairly common in Ukraine.

Ukraine has considerable agricultural potential. In particular, it has 4.5% of agricultural land and the world more than 8% of arable land. She owns 1% of the world's agricultural lands have been certified as "organic" and about 1% of the irrigated land. It accounts for about 8% of the world's black soil.

Presence in Ukraine favorable soil and climatic conditions ensured that in 2011/2012 marketing year, she entered the top three corn exports; its share in global exports of this culture was 9%. In addition, she is one of the world's largest exporters of barley (the first in the world), wheat (sixth place). She belongs to the 4th place in the world production of sunflower seeds, 2 nd place - the production of sunflower oil and 1st place - on its exports.

However, along with the positive trend are significant negative consequences. Given that Ukraine remains the leading country - exporter of sunflower oil crops of this culture in the structure of arable land as high as 21% (figure 1). This constitutes a violation of rotations in these farms, which adversely affects the fertility of soils and their ecological status.

The book «Globalization as a Destroyer of the Industry and the Gravedigger of the Productive Forces» V. Engdal shows that the desire to shift the "harmful" and labor-intensive agroindustries in the less developed countries (i.e., trans-nationalization of the economy) acts as a destructive alternative to production modernization in metropolitan countries. ATCs, which are guided by the principle of maximizing profits, often have a negative impact on the world economy and ecology of the planet [19, p. 13]. All attempts by the UN to adopt a code of ethics for their activities were in vain. In an effort to increase revenues of an agrocorporation, the owners resort to the use of management practices which are environmentally harmful and dangerous to human health. Currently, common enough in agricultural practices are stimulators and inhibitors of growth, the products of genetic engineering, antibiotics, pesticides, chemically synthesized fertilizers, which in some cases are used in unreasonably high doses.


Examining the conditions that necessitated the ecologization of agricultural production is evident that ensure harmonious relations in the "economy-society-nature" be possible only under condition of introduction of organizational and economic regulation.

Overall, the results of the research suggest that the organizational and economic regulation ecologization of agriculture must meet the requirements of economic laws and take into account current trends in the field of public policy. This policy must be focused on the deregulation of economic activity and bringing national regulatory system to European standards.

Conclusions and guidelines of the further research.

1. Despite the actualization of the issue of balanced and harmonious development and the presence of numerous publications in this area should be recognized that in the relationship "man-nature" appears more and more conflicts and contradictions. In this connection ecologi- zation of agricultural production and ecologiza- tion economy should be seen as a response to global social and environmental challenges.

2. Research of the preconditions for ecolo- gization of agricultural production creates theoretical and methodological background to change priorities and form the highly efficient ecological and socio-economic agricultural policy, and is essential to optimization of the use of resources. At the same time it is expected that this will contribute to the development of new theoretical and practical approaches to the organization of production by improving the management systems and development of environmentally-oriented technological solutions.

3. At the present stage of development and interaction between society and nature the production ecologization appears not as an isolated phenomenon, but is considered as an objective need for economic growth and is an integral component of sustainable development. This, in turn, determines the need to study the socioeconomic prerequisites for environment-friendly agricultural development to achieve the optimal, consistent transition of the agricultural sector to a new level, which is one of the most important and urgent problems of modern science.

4. The modern environmental, social and economic challenges are determining the need for ecologization of agricultural production, include meeting people's needs in environment- friendly food; ensuring human environmental safety; use of technology and methods of agricultural production as well as processing of raw materials that do not harm human health and the environment. It should be noted that the range of social needs in recent years has expanded significantly. Now it includes the environmental needs of the recreational resources and rural "green" tourism. Increasingly, the question is raised about the need to conserve and enhance soil fertility, protection of agricultural land. Over recent years, actively developing organic production. Much attention is paid to the introduction of environmental and biodynamic technologies of agricultural land use.


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4. Karmaev N.A. The role of the spiritual factor in the ecologization of the productive forces : avtoref. dys. for a scientific degree PhD : specialty 09.00.01 “Dialectical and historical materialism” / N.A. Karmaev. - Leningrad, 1984. - 22 c.

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6. Lamine C. Transition pathways towards a robust ecologization of agriculture and the need for system redesign. Cases from organic farming and IPM / Lamine C. // Journal of Rural Studies. - 2011. - Vol. 27. - Issue 2. - P. 209-219.

7. Allaire G. Crop Diversity and Ecologization of the Common Agricultural Policy / Allaire G., Fuzeau V., Therond O. // Research in economics and rural sociology. - 2013.

8. Deverre C. The ecologization of European Union agricultural Policy and Research Agenda. Which Theoretical Choices ? / Deverre C., De Sainte Marie C. // International Symposium on Society and Resource Management. Landscape Continuity and Change Social Science Perspectives and Interdisciplinary Contributions. - USA: Park City UT, 2007.

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10. Kupinec L. Ecologization food complex: theory, methodology, mechanisms. / L. Kupinec. - Odessa: IPREEI NAN of Ukraine, 2010. - 712 c.

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