Tuesday, 4 December 2007


Subsidydependency [subsidiodependência] is a condition that was identified by Portuguese farmers.
Subsidydependency is a situation in which farmers cannot control their farm operation themselves, but their decisions are shaped by the requirements to receive financial state support, on which they rely in order to secure an income or pay off debts.
As producer prices are so low and production costs increasing, farmers cannot secure their livelihoods based on agricultural production and have to rely on state support to keep in farming. (It is as if a physician couldn't earn enough through his work because it was not properly valued, and he had to rely on charity to survive.) Subsidydependency is a destabilizing condition and perceived as unfair and humiliating, especially so because farmers are those people who used to be proud of their independence and self-reliance and now have as much decision power and control over their livelihoods as a factory worker.
Subsidydependency is a result of agricultural and trade policies and of the agricultural treadmill (increasing production costs and decreasing producer prices as a result of technological innovations).
No cure for this condition is known today.

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