Environmental Awareness of Farmers vs. Agricultural Sustainability
Purpose: Modern agriculture aims at sustainable management, i.e., stable and, simultaneously, economically viable and socially acceptable production, without endangering the environment. The aim of this paper was to evaluate the ecological awareness and pro-environmental attitudes among farmers managing agricultural holdings located in Wielkopolskie Voivodship. Methodology: The source of empirical material comprised of a pilot survey conducted in 383 agricultural holdings in Wielkopolska. The measuring method consisted in a direct interview, using a standardized questionnaire. The questions were provided using the rank scale method, as well as the Likert scale. The collected information was analysed and subsequently characterised using descriptive statistics methods. The study was conducted from November 2018 to April 2019, both electronically and through direct contact with farmers. Findings: The study concludes that a large number of the surveyed farmers declared knowledge of Good Agricultural Practices (73%) and Principle of Cross-compliance (67%). The majority of agricultural producers in Wielkopolska (56%) were convinced of the negative impact of conventional agriculture and their activities on the environment. The surveyed farmers indicated their willingness to undertake pro-ecological measures in their agricultural holdings. Practical Implications: The farmers' environmental awareness is a key factor in reducing the negative impact of agricultural production on the natural environment. Originality/Value: Understanding farmers' attitudes and behavior in terms of environmental protection is essential to identify and implement effective protection measures.