Danish agriculture is among the most efficient and knowledge based agricultural clusters in the world. This succes can be ascribed to a high level of education and organisation, embodied in the Danish co-operative movement, as well as good agricultural soil, internal competition and demand from consumers and export markets. Furthermore, Denmark is in the lead when it comes to food quality and safety as well as the development of new agricultural products.
61% of Denmark’s total area is cultivated. The farms are large, with an average size of 70 ha. However, more than 20% of the farms exceed 100 ha of land. Many farms produce crops, but a large proportion have livestock and especially meat, fur and dairy products are main export goods from Danish agriculture. The production is efficient with low use of resources, and the environmental footprint is therefore small. Denmark has a population of 5.7 million inhabitants. However, the food production is high enough to feed 15 million people, a feature that shows the high productivity of the Danish agricultural production. Due to this excess production most products are exported. The agricultural cluster contributes by 25% to the total Danish export of goods.
Optimal machinery for use in the field, in stables and in further processing is essential for the productivity, sustainability and high quality in Danish agriculture. Advanced equipment to monitor food products (such as dairy, meat or wine) during production enables homogenous quality and high food safety. Grain analysis by instruments developed and manufactured in Denmark ensures fair payment for farmers around the world. Animal breeding is another example of successful Danish agribusiness. The number of piglets per sow in a year has increased by 36% in 15 years, while the fat concentration has decreased by 30% since the 1970s. These significant results have led to an annual export of more than 400,000 Danish boars and several millions portions of semen.
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Surrounded by sea on three sides and bordering mainland Europe on the fourth, Denmark has always been influenced by its surroundings, over time evolving into a nation with a proud maritime tradition. In fact, Denmark is the 5th largest maritime shipping nation in the world. In earlier times the homeland of sea-faring Vikings, Denmark underwent an enormous expansion through the determined efforts of a succession of kings in the Viking and Early Middle Ages. Over time Denmark shrunk to its current size: 43,000 square kilometres and 5.6 million inhabitants surrounded by 7,314 kilometres of shoreline.
Nowadays a peaceful and technologically advanced society, Denmark has one of the highest standards of living in the world and a high degree of social, economic and gender equality. Despite their ideological disagreements, when it comes to crucial reforms and issues, Denmark’s political parties have developed a tradition for across-the-divide cooperation that dates back to the adoption of the first constitution in 1849, making for a stable political climate.
Denmark is currently the world’s sixth most globalized country, in part due to a very high degree of internationalisation among Danish companies. Danes have been repeatedly ranked first in terms of happiness, which to a large extent can be attributed to the Danish welfare system that combines a flexible labour market with comprehensive benefits and an active labour market policy. Free, tax-paid education and healthcare, a high level of mutual trust, and a 94 percent workplace satisfaction also serve to maintain a general sense of optimism and well-being.
With Danish culture, design, and New Nordic cuisine recognized around the world, and its well-known emphasis on green solutions and sustainability, Denmark continually aims to be at the forefront and often plays a bigger role than its size would suggest.
Find more information about Denmark and Danes here: denmark.dk