Youth survey – Change wanted

General

Young people in Germany are calling on politicians to provide more support for organic farming.

Young people are concerned about the use of pesticides in agriculture and call on politicians to take action. They want more ecology in the field and call for greater support for farms.

Recent youth studies and the Fridays for Future movement show a high level of climate protection awareness among teenagers and young adults.
In 2021, a survey was conducted in Germany among 16- to 29-year-olds about biodiversity, pesticide use and environmental protection.

The results show that there is widespread interest in how production is carried out - very few of the young respondents (7.2 percent) said they did not care about the issue.

A good two-thirds are concerned about the risks of pesticide use in agriculture and consider the use to be dangerous.

Organic is associated with clear benefits for the environment and species conservation. Just under 60 percent said they buy organic food for these reasons.

When looking at the situation of farmers, young adults see major challenges: 70 percent assume that it is difficult to farm under today's conditions.

However, confidence in the problem-solving competence of agriculture is low. Less than a quarter of respondents believe in the responsible use of pesticides. Almost three quarters call on politicians to ensure reduced pesticide use.

To the question "Should pesticides continue to be used in the future?
48 percent of the respondents agreed on "Use as a last resort in exceptional cases".
Another 32 percent advocate sparing use.
20 percent recommend a ban.
Only just under 1 percent advocate unrestricted use.
This sets ambitious reduction targets that go far beyond what policymakers have been aiming for so far. 80 percent of respondents express their willingness to support a signature campaign calling for the gradual abandonment of pesticides and help with conversion for agriculture.

Conclusion: Young people between the ages of 16 and 29 are in favor of an agricultural sector that either dispenses with synthetic chemical crop protection or at least significantly reduces its use. Debates about glyphosate and biodiversity risks have reached this age group. Farmers are seen as being driven by an agricultural system that exposes them to unfair framework conditions.

Next Generation IBMA

Reference source