CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change.

Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change
Elisio Contini1 Geraldo Martha, Jr.2

ABSTRACT The Brazilian industrialization process was essential for the modernization of agriculture. The outstanding transformation of the Brazilian agriculture is related to both the domestic market and the exports. From 1975 to 2010, the production of the five main annual crops (rice, maize, beans, soybeans and wheat) increased at rates of 3.66% p.a and their productivity grew at 2.95% p.a. From 1979 to 2009, the annual growth rate in beef, pork and poultry production was 5.42%, 4.66% and 8.45%, respectively. Sugarcane production has increased 9.0% per year in the last decade in response to sugar and ethanol markets’ signals. From 1997 to 2009, agriculture and agribusiness exports generated a surplus of US$ 403 billion, strongly contributing to the Brazilian external accounts balance and macroeconomic stability. The total factor productivity increased at 2.27% p.a in the 1970-2006 period. Projections to 2020 from the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply indicate that the potential for growth of the Brazilian agriculture and agribusiness still stands. The most dynamic products are projected to be soybeans, poultry, sugar, ethanol, cotton, soybean oil, and cellulose. Keywords: agribusiness, exports, food supply.

1. INTRODUCTION The Brazilian agriculture was deeply transformed in the last 35 years – 1975/2010. On the demand side, this was a response to the growing population of higher income and to the fast urbanization process taking place from late 1960’s to early 1980’s, in the so-called “Brazilian miracle”, when Brazil’s economy was growing at today China’s rates. The challenges at that time were to increase agricultural output to supply the growing urban population with cheap food (avoiding high-salaries inflationary pressures) and to diversify agricultural exports, allowing for imports of capital goods for the rising national industry.
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Researcher, Brazilian Agricultural Research Coorporation (Embrapa), Center for Strategic Studies and Training on Tropical Agriculture (Embrapa Estudos Estratégicos e Capacitação). contini@embrapa.br. Researcher, Brazilian Agricultural Research Coorporation (Embrapa), Center for Strategic Studies and Training on Tropical Agriculture (Embrapa Estudos Estratégicos e Capacitação). geraldo.martha@embrapa.br. Fellow, National Research Council (CNPq).

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

Brazilian agriculture responded satisfactorily to these challenges and now it stands as one of the agricultural superpower in the world (Martha et al., 2010). Basically, this fast and revolutionary style of development on the supply side, strongly based on productivity gains, and, to a minor extent, on land area expansion, must be accredited to: 1) daring entrepreneurs, many of them small-scale farmers in its origins; 2) the availability of basic infrastructure and cheap arable lands for mechanization in the Brazilian savannas (“Cerrado” in Portuguese) – yet these soils were of low chemical fertility they had high physical quality; 3) the development of novelty and science-based technologies for tropical environments (varieties, soil management, production systems); and 4) the design and implementation of sectorial policies instruments, such as rural credit and minimum price policies. This article is structured in six parts. In the first one, we discuss the outstanding drivingforces of the development of Brazilian agriculture. Then, we present and discuss data on production, area and productivity of major agricultural commodities in the country. In the third section Brazilian agricultural/agribusiness exports are covered and, in the fourth part, the focus turns to the total factor productivity. In the fifth section, some perspectives and trends for Brazilian agriculture are presented. In a final section, attention is directed to sustainable agricultural systems in Brazil.3

2. DRIVING-FORCES OF BRAZILIAN AGRICULTURE MODERNIZATION 2.1. Industrialization and rural-urban migration After the World War II, Brazilian policymakers had become convinced that Brazil could no longer solely rely on the exportation of its primary products to attain its development, leading to an ambitious import-substitution industrialization policy.4 The policy was anchored on exchange controls, multiple exchange-rate systems to favor the import of capital goods, and on subsidized interest rates loans for the industry of capital goods. In the 1970s, the economic policy favored the import of consumer goods and investments in energy and transportation infrastructure. The purchasing power of urban salaries was further favored by investments in urban infrastructure, e.g. housing and health, and by food policies aimed to keep food prices low to avoid pressures on the urban workers’ salaries. Politically, the industrialization policy shifted the power from the rural areas to the cities, transforming Brazil into a progressive urban society (Dias and Amaral, 2000). These distorting policies against rural areas were translated into an accelerated ruralurban migration process starting in the 1950’s. After the 1990’s, the urbanization process lost impetus. In part because the rural-urbanization cycle was almost completely in the South, Southest and Center-West regions (Alves et al., 1999) but also because of the low economic growth rates in the country during the 1980’s and the 1990’s that weakened the attractiveness of the cities. The percentage of urban population in Brazil, according to the Brazilian Institute
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Contini et al. (2010) presented a more detailed discussion. See Baer (2008) for a detailed discussion.

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), in 1940, 1950, 1960, 1970, 1980, 1991, 2000 and 2010 (forecast) was 31.2%, 36.2%, 44.7%, 55.9%, 67.6%, 75.6%, 81.6% and 86.8%, respectively. Based on data from the IBGE, Alves and Rocha (2010) showed that from 1991 to 2000 the percentage of migrants from rural to urban areas was of 24.7 %; between 2000 and 2007 the migration process dropped to 12.5 % of the rural population. The high (urban) population and per capita income growth rates between 1950 and early 1980’s caused the demand for food to increase at rates of up to 6% per year. The increased opportunity cost of labor for the farmers and the massive rural exodus scenario led to a favorable environment for agriculture growth and modernization. From mid-1990’s onwards, the macroeconomic stability, the better relative prices in the world markets, and the maturation of tropical agricultural technologies generated in the preceding 15 years settled the basis for a new era in Brazilian agribusiness. The sector moved fast forward from a traditional to a science-based agriculture.

2.2. Brazilian agriculture modernization Three policies played a central role in the agricultural modernization process: a) the (financial) subsidized credit, mainly for capital financing and for purchasing of modern inputs; b) the rural extension; and, c) the support to agricultural research, under the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation’s (Embrapa) leadership. Rural credit Beginning in the mid-1960’s, rural credit was mainly provided by the Federal Government through the “Banco do Brasil” (“Bank of Brazil”) and “Banco do Nordeste” (“Bank of the Northeast”) system. The private sector had little participation in the loans to farmers until late 1980’s. The interest rates were more heavily subsidized from 1970 to 1985 (Coelho, 2001). Rural credit peaked in 1979, with US$ 75.8 billion.5 Then, as a part of the imposed macroeconomic adjustment in the 1980’s and early 1990’s, it fast declined to around US$ 11.5 billion in 1995-1996; and, then, it slowly increased to US$ 43 billion in 2009.6 Policies toward agriculture modernization did not achieve the objective of reaching most of the producers in the 1950-1985 period. Farmers’ low schooling, limited financial resource availability and lack of legally-regularized land ownership hampered the widespread technology adoption. As a consequence, rural credit was in certain terms not inclusive and benefited privileged farmers, mainly those ones coming from the South-Southeast region. Rural extension In the 1950-1970 period Brazilian policy makers put a lot of emphasis in rural extension and neglected efforts in research. Their hypothesis was that a vast array of technologies was !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Currency rate R$ 1,75/US$ 1,00.

Data from the Brazilian Central Bank (Bacen). Values were deflated to 2009 prices using FGV, Getulio Vargas Foundation’s, IGP-DI. The figures don’t include the rural credit for family agriculture – PRONAF – that received increased resources after late 1980’s, and, especially in the last decade.

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

already available for adoption. In early 1970’s empirical evidence proved this hypothesis was false. A virtuous cycle of tropical agricultural research was initiated and science-based technologies fuelled the extension service. In this context, governmental rural credit was associated with public and private technical assistance. The idea was to strength human capital to better utilize the investments being made available for capital goods and modern inputs acquisition. The technical assistance association with rural credit was compulsory until the 1990’s, being paid by the farmer through a fee. In the last decade this association was not mandatory but for a few credit lines. Farmers well-integrated into markets have been predominantly using private technical assistance. Agricultural research In late 1960’s Brazilian policymakers realized that the strategy to increase food supply through cultivated area expansion should be revised. There was more than half of the national territory that remained untouched and could – and, actually, according to the Military Government at that time, should – be occupied. However, the stock of agricultural technologies and empirical knowledge at that time signalized that the agricultural frontier – the “Brazilian Cerrado” – could, at best, accommodate only subsistence farming. The Brazilian Government rejected the subsistence-farming alternative and started a huge effort to transform traditional tropical agriculture toward one based on science and anchored on productivity gains instead of area expansion. In 1973 the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation, Embrapa, of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply, was created. A concentrated research model was conceived, centered on capacity strengthening of human resources, and on excellence research centers in Brazil and abroad (Figure 1). The Embrapa model focused on products of economic importance, thematic areas and eco-regional resources that were translated into decentralized and specialized centers. Adequate research infrastructure (such as laboratories facilities) was provided with the objective of maximizing applied research results and overall efficiency (Alves, 2010). At the same time that massive investments were taking place in research and researchers’ training, financial resources for rural extension were not discontinued. In mid-1980’s States’ responsibility on agricultural research and on science generation at Agricultural Colleges were strengthened through the creation of the National Agricultural Research System, under Embrapa leadership. The applied agricultural science unveiled the constraints imposed by the poor acid soils of the Cerrado. New-crop varieties, adapted to low-latitudes and to soil and climatic conditions of the tropics, and modern inputs were increased incorporated into novel production systems. The intensification of agricultural mechanization, particularly in grain production, was also an important part of the development of Brazilian agriculture.

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

Figure 1: Embrapa Research Units.

3. EVOLUTION OF AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION, AREA AND PRODUCTIVITY Grains and oilseeds The increase in agricultural production can be achieved through the expansion of the cultivated area, the increase in productivity or, more frequently, a combination of both. In the decades following World War II, food production in Brazil relied heavily on area expansion. However, from mid-1970’s onwards, food production were mainly explained by productivity gains. In the 1976-2010 period grain and oilseeds area increased by 27%, whilst production increased by 213% and yields increased 2,5 times (Figure 2, Table 1).

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

Figure 2. Evolution of the grain and oilseeds production (million metric tons) and area (million hectares) in Brazil from 1975 to 2010. Source: After Conab (2010).

Table 1. Production, area and productivity growth rates in Brazilian agriculture, 1975 – 2010.
Years 1975 to 2010 1980 to 1989 1990 to 1999 2000 to 2010 RICE -2.38 -0.97 -3.25 -2.07 RICE 1.05 2.98 0.82 1.31 RICE 3.51 3.99 4.20 3.45 Harvested Area MAIZE BEANS 0.38 -0.64 1.72 1.35 -0.95 -3.04 1.53 0.13 Production MAIZE BEANS 3.43 1.52 2.98 1.13 3.54 0.28 4.38 2.63 Productivity MAIZE BEANS 3.04 2.18 1.24 -0.22 4.53 3.43 2.80 2.50 SOYBEANS 3.58 3.35 2.66 5.05 SOYBEANS 5.55 4.16 6.80 6.06 SOYBEANS 1.90 0.79 4.04 0.96 WHEAT -1.63 5.08 -6.15 3.09 WHEAT 1.35 14.76 -2.09 5.96 WHEAT 2.92 9.21 4.32 1.79

1975 to 2010 1980 to 1989 1990 to 1999 2000 to 2010

1975 to 2010 1980 to 1989 1990 to 1999 2000 to 2010

Source: Gasques 2010, after Conab and IBGE’s Agricultural Census.

Meat and milk Similar trends were observed in the meat sector (Figure 3). The production from beef, pork and poultry increased steadily from 4.270 thousand metric tons, in 1978, to 22.144
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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

thousand metric tons in 2009. In the 1978-2009 period, poultry production increased from 1.096 thousand tons to 11.127 thousand tons (10 times); pork production increased from 1.060 thousand tons to 3.190 thousand tons (3 times); and beef production increased from 2.114 thousand tons to 7.827 thousand tons (3,7 times). In the 1978-2009 period, the growth rates registered for beef, poultry and pork were, respectively, 4.46%, 8.03% and 3.74%. Milk production also deserves to be highlighted; the production significantly increased from of 11.16 billions liters, in 1980, to 30.3 billions of liters in 2009 (Conab, 2010).

Figure 3. Evolution of meat production in Brazil from 1978/1979 to 2008/2009. Source: After Conab (2010).

Sugar and ethanol Sugarcane production showed strong expansion between 1975/1976 and 2009/2010, from 89 million metric tons to 696 millions metric tons. In the period, sugar production increased 369%, from 6.72 million tons to 31.51 million tons. Total ethanol production (anhydrous and hydrated) showed similar trend, growing from 0.60 billion liters, 1975/1976, to 25.56 billion liters in 2009/2010 (Figure 4). These results in the sugarcane sector are explained by the strong domestic demand for carburant ethanol, high sugar prices in the international market and also governmental policies. Hydrated ethanol became a big business as flex-fuel vehicles were made available to consumers in early 2000’s. Flex-fuels vehicles, that work with ethanol mixtures with gasoline varying from nil to 100%, represented close to 90% of the total light-vehicles sales in 2009. Regarding public policies, a first one is the establishment of 20% – 25% anhydrous ethanol mixture to gasoline. The second is that gasoline prices are held artificially higher (e.g. 20% – 25%) than its border price. A third and final policy is related to the tax burden over the

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

automotive vehicles, where lower taxes (tax over industrialized products – IPI) are allowed for ethanol-fueled vehicles with more than 1,000 cc.

Figure 4. Evolution of the sugarcane, ethanol and sugar production in Brazil from 1996/1997 to 2009/2009. Source: After Conab (2010).

4. AGRICULTURAL AND AGRIBUSINESS EXPORTS Brazilian exports were very dynamic in the last decade. The exportation portfolio got more diversified and several new markets started importing agricultural products from Brazil. In 1995, Brazil accounted for 5% of the world agricultural trade. In 2008, its share increased to 8%, the second biggest agricultural exporter after the U.S. (Liapis, 2010). Brazilian meat sector has been outstanding. In 1997, beef, pork and poultry represented 6.8% of the Brazilian agribusiness’ exports value. In 2009, meat exports, amounting US$ 11.78 billion, had a share of 18.4%. In the 1979-2009 period, the annual growth rates in beef, pork and poultry exports were 7.92%, 24.28% and 11.38%. In the last decade (2000-2009), the respective annual growth rates were 14.16%, 12.37% and 15.82% (Agrostat Brasil, 2010). Additionally, agribusiness exports are very important to the Brazilian trade balance and macroeconomic stability. Between 1997 and 2009, agribusiness accumulated a trade surplus of US$ 405 billion and this performance was even better in the last couple of years (Figure 5).

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

Figure 5. Agribusiness Trade Balance: 1989 to 2009. Source: AgroStat-Brasil (2010) with data from MDIC/Secex.

5. TOTAL FACTOR PRODUCTIVITY The total factor productivity (TFP) of the Brazilian agriculture increased steadily, and continuously, in the last 36 years (1970-2006). Compared to 1970 (index 100), the TFP increased 124%, the product rose 243% and inputs grew 53% (Table 2). These figures reinforce the style of development of the Brazilian agriculture, prioritizing productivity gains instead of land area expansion. Investments in research have been very important for these positive achievements. Gasques et al. (2009) estimated that a 1% increase in Embrapa’s research expending increases the agricultural TFP by 0.2%. In the last decade (1995-2006), productivity indicators (TFP, land productivity and labor productivity) represented approximately 95% of the values registered in the 1970-2006 period. In comparison with the 36-years period, input and product indexes in the 1995-2006 period dropped to 83% and 90%, respectively, (Table 3). Gains in productivity represented 65% of the agricultural output in the 1970-2006 period, while inputs explained 35%. In the last decade, productivity was even more important and represented 68% of the production increase. The annual growth rate in the area theoretically worked per farmer (=labor productivity rate - land productivity rate, Table 3) was 0.21% from 1970-2006 and 0.24% in the last decade. This slow increase indicates that is great potential to increase agricultural mechanization in Brazil.

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

Table 2. Product index, inputs index and TFP - Brazil
YEARS 1970 1975 1980 1985 1995 2006 Product Index 100 139 173 211 244 343 Inputs Index 100 122 142 149 137 153 TFP (100) 100 114 122 142 178 224

Source: Gasques et al. (2010).

Table 3. Growth rates of the product index, inputs index, TFP, productivity of the land and of the labor – Brazil.
Specification Product Index Inputs Index TFP Productivity Land Productivity Labor 2006/1970 3.48 1.19 2.27 3.32 3.53 2006/1995 3.14 0.99 2.13 3.16 3.40

Source: Gasques et al. (2010).

6. BRAZILIAN AGRIBUSINESS PROJECTIONS TO 2019/20 Brazilian agribusiness emerged as a key-player in the international scenario in the last decade. Projections presented in this section reinforce that this role will be strengthened in the near future given Brazil’s ability to expand its supply of agricultural products to meet world market demand. Major factors fueling demand are population growth, per capita income increase and accelerated rural-urban migration. This section draws on the recent Agricultural Outlook prepared by the Strategic Management Unit, of the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply (MAPA/AGE, 2010). Brazilian production of the five main grains and oilseeds (soybeans, maize, wheat, rice and beans) should increase from 129.8 million metric tons, in 2008/09, to 177.5 million metric tons, in 2019/2020. Meat production (beef, pork and poultry) should increase an additional 8.4 million metric tons in the 2008/2009 – 2019/2020 period. In the same period, milk, sugar, ethanol and cellulose are projected to face an increase in production of 7.4 billion litters, 15.2 million metric tons, 35.2 billion liters and 5.3 million tons, respectively. (Table 4).

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

Table 4. Main trends for the Brazilian agricultural production to 2019/2020.
Product Maize Soybeans Wheat Rice Beans Chicken Beef Pork Milk Sugar Ethanol Cellulose Unit million metric tons million metric tons million metric tons million metric tons million metric tons million metric tons million metric tons million metric tons billion liters million metric tons billion liters million metric tons 2008/2009 50.97 57.09 5.67 12.63 3.48 11.13 7.83 3.19 30.34 31.50 27.67 12.70 2019/2020 70.12 81.95 7.07 14.12 4.27 16.63 9.92 3.95 37.75 46.70 62.91 18.10 2019/2020 37.57 43.55 24.70 11.72 22.61 49.44 26.76 23.91 24.45 48.24 127.33 42.56

Source: MAPA/AGE (2010).

It is important to stress that in spite of the increased importance of Brazil in the international agricultural market, domestic food supply is not (Figure 6) and will not be compromised. The share of the production projected to be exported by 2019/2020 is 18% for corn, 46% for soybeans, from 21% to 37% for meat, and 24% for ethanol. Productivity will continue to be the main driver of food/feed production expansion. Production is expected to grow 2.88% per year, and productivity is projected to explain around 70% of the increased agricultural output. Cropland area is likely to increase 9.3 million hectares. This area represents only 5.9% of the current pasture area in Brazil, signalizing that sparing-land effects generated by small increases in pasture productivity can easily accommodate crops demand for land (Martha & Vilela, 2009).

Figure 6. Domestic consumption and exports (2009), Brazil. Source: Mapa, 2010.

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

7. SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS IN BRAZIL The concept and importance of sustainable systems are becoming more relevant and inevitably will be a high-priority in the future. No concise, universally acceptable definition of sustainable agriculture has yet emerged. In part, this is so because sustainability is viewed more often as a management philosophy rather than a method of operation and, as such, acceptance or rejection of any definition is linked to one´s value system (Heitschimdt et al., 1996). In spite of this, it is well accepted that sustainability’s dimensions – technical, economic, social and environmental – should be pursued. These dimensions have strong interdependence linkages and, ideally, should be simultaneously met. In other words, to focus in a unique dimension, such as economic or environmental, will not reflect the multiple dimensions of sustainability. Rather than this limited view agricultural production systems should design strategies that return win-win situations, e.g., simultaneous gains in all sustainability dimensions. When this ideal condition is not an option small loss-big gain situations should be targeted. And, under this view, it should be internalized that sometimes one dimension, such as the economic, must be favored at the expense of a second one, such as the environment, and vice-versa, e.g, the environmental dimension be favored over the economic one (Martha, 2010a). The Brazilian Government and the country’s agricultural sector are already committed with a sustainable agriculture. In the last decades, farmers are steadily adopting conservation practices, such as no-till planting, and more resource-efficient systems, such as integrated crop-livestock systems (Martha, 2010b). The Government is providing credit and financing to allow the continuity of such a path. An example is the newly-launched ABC program (an acronyms for low-carbon agriculture, in Portuguese), with US$ 1.14 billions of available resources to be lent at 5.5% interest rate in the 2010/2011 season. Furthermore, under the Brazilian Climate Change Law, from December 2009, 15 million hectares of degraded land (mostly pastures) shall be recovered, and 4 million hectares of integrated crop-livestock systems, 8 million hectares of no-till planting and 5.5 million hectares of biological nitrogen fixation should be additionally implemented in the next decade. Three million hectares of planted forest should also be established. Overall, the Government estimates that these actions in the agricultural sector will allow for 166 million tons of CO2-equivalent reduction per year in the 2010-2020 period. Conservative estimates points out that biofuel use additionally contribute with an annually reduction of 60 million tons of CO2-equivalent.

8. FINAL COMMENTS The development of modern agriculture in Brazil was initially prompted by the industrialization policy, especially in late 1960’s and early 1970’s, which created, through urbanization and higher per capita income, strong demand for the agricultural sector. The accelerated population growth at that time was also important. Three policy instruments were key: (i) subsidized financial credit, for modern inputs purchase and capital financing; (ii) investments in science and technology (Embrapa, the State’s research system and colleges of agriculture); and, (iii) rural extension. From mid-1990’s onwards, Brazilian agriculture greatly

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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

benefited from globalization and the world demand, that provided the necessary incentives for more robust and diversified exports. In the 1970-2010 period, the Brazilian production of grains, oilseeds, meat, milk, sugar, ethanol and cellulose sharply increased. In the 1970-2006 period, the total factor productivity increased 124%, the product rose 243% and inputs grew 53%. Continuous productivity gains in the last decades by far and large explained these results. Projections presented in this paper reinforce that Brazil’s role in the international agricultural market will be strengthened in the near future. The Brazilian Government and the country’s agricultural sector are committed with a sustainable agriculture to boost further expansion in food/feed and bioenergy production. Farmers are steadily adopting conservation practices and more resource-efficient systems, while the Government is compromised in providing credit and financing to allow the continuity of such a path.

9. REFERENCES AGROSTAT-BRASIL. Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento – Secretaria de Relações Internacionais. Base de dados on line - Agrostat. Disponível em <www.agricultura.gov.br> Acesso em: maio, 2010. ALVES, E. Embrapa: um caso bem-sucedido de inovação institucional. Revista de Política Agrícola, v.19, edição especial, p.65-73. ALVES, E.; LOPES, M.; CONTINI, E. O empobrecimento da Agricultura Brasileira. Revista de Política Agrícola, v.8, n.3, p. 5-19, 1999. ALVES, E.; ROCHA, D. P. Ganhar tempo é possível? Seminário Mapa/IPEA, março de 2010, 14p. BACEN. Banco Central do Brasil - Anuário do Crédito rural. Evolução do crédito Rural. Disponível em: <http://www.bcb.gov.br/htms/CreditoRural/2009/evolucao.pdf>. Acesso em maio de 2010. BAER, W. The Brazilian economy. 6th edition. Lynne Rienner Publishers: Boulder, 2008. 443p. COELHO, C. N. 70 anos de política agrícola no Brasil (1931-2001). Revista de Política Agrícola, 2001. CONAB. Levantamento de Safras. Disponível http://www.conab.gov.br/conabweb/download/safra/BrasilProdutoSerieHist.xls. Acesso março, 2010. em: em

CONTINI, E., GASQUES, J.G., ALVES, E., BASTOS, E.T. Dinamismo da agricultura brasileira. Revista de Política Agrícola, v.19, edição especial, p.42-64. DIAS, G. L.; AMARAL, C. M. Mudanças Estruturais na Agricultura Brasileira, 1980-1998. In: BAUMANN, Renato, (Org.). Brasil: uma década em transição. Rio de Janeiro:Cepal/Campus, 2000.
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CONTINI, E.; MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Brazilian agriculture, its productivity and change. Bertebos Conference on “Food security and the futures of farms: 2020 and toward 2050”. Falkenberg: Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, August 29-31, 2010.

GASQUES, J.G.; BASTOS, E. T. e BACCHI, M. R. P. Produtividade e Fontes de Crescimento da Agricultura. Seminário IPEA, Brasília, 08 de junho de 2009. GASQUES, J.G.; BASTOS, E. T.; BACCHI, M. R. P.; VALDES, C. Produtividade Total dos Fatores e Transformações da Agricultura Brasileira: análise dos dados dos Censos Agropecuários. (Versão Preliminar) Março de 2010. HEITSCHIMIDT, R. K., SHORT, R. E., GRINGS, E. E. 1996. Ecosystems, sustainability, and animal agriculture. J. Anim. Sci. 74:1395-1405. IBGE. Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística. Censos Agropecuários (vários anos). LIAPIS, P.S. Trends in agricultural trade. Joint ICTSD-FAO expert meeting, Geneva, Switzerland, March 25-26 2010. MAPA/AGE. Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento. Projeções do Agronegócio: Brasil 2009/10 a 2019/20. Assessoria de Gestão Estratégica, Brasília. Disponível em :<www.agricultura.gov.br> Acesso em: maio, 2010. MARTHA, Jr., G.B. Sustentabilidade da pecuária de corte. Revista JC Maschietto, n.8, p.7-8, 2010a. MARTHA, Jr., G.B. The road from Kyoto to Copenhagen: how can we ensure sustainable growth? International Food Policy Research Institute, “Bold actions for stimulating inclusive growth”, Board Meeting, Brasília, Brazil, June 2 2010b. MARTHA, Jr., G.B., ALVES, E., CONTINI, E., RAMOS, S.Y. Estilo de desenvolvimento da agropecuária brasileira. Revista de Política Agrícola, v.19, edição especial, p.93-106. MARTHA, Jr., G.B., VILELA, L. Efeito poupa-terra de sistemas de integração lavourapecuária. Planaltina: Embrapa Cerrados, 2009, 4p. (Embrapa Cerrados. Comunicado Técnico, 164). ****************************

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