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Agribusiness Predictions for 2017

Posted By Agribusiness Global Allies, Friday, 17 February 2017
Updated: Friday, 17 February 2017

Agribusiness Predictions for 2017


Global Summary

For Consumers

Population Up, Food Prices Up

For Producers

Farmer Population Down, Farmer Profit Margins Down


Overall Summary


Globally, predictions for trends in 2017 would have been similar to 2016 but for the unexpected Brexit Referendum and the US Presidential election results. Namely, the comment that "although patchy, this will be the last decade where globalisation is perceived as a threat to current generations". Whilst that macro-trend is the expected to continue, the rate of change will be slowed. It is only slowed however, because the overall momentum towards globalisation will continue. This arises from the likely collective response of the European Community to Brexit, and the rest of the world working more collaboratively in response to the likely rise in Trump protectionism. These collective responses will counter that loss in momentum. 


In future decades, and with future generations, globalisation will just be accepted as a normal part of doing business. The Brexit-Trump era will become the exception that proves the rule. The Brexit-Trump era, and other rises in protectionism aimed at preventing the perceived decline of in-country agribusiness development will be eventually overcome by the proven success of opening trade up throughout the world (i.e. proven in terms of enhancing overall global economic conditions).


It is inevitable that World food prices will rise in response to increasing population and declining agronomic resources. The overall increase will be reduced by energy cost falls and weaker economic activity.


What will increase?

  • Agribusiness industry representation fragmentation (the world will see increasing numbers of producer and food-oriented consumer groups forming, often with opposing policies)
  • Brands, importance of
  • Chinese emigration (people and capital)
  • City-base urban gardens, particularly vertical gardens
  • Commencement and slow rise of pluralism will begin to challenge partisanship as peoples seek to improve governance
  • Desertification
  • Emerging skills-based digital TV channels enable sharing (leap frogging to smart phones)
  • Environmental Enforcement
  • Food prices
  • Food provenance verification
  • Food security
  • Global and in-country cold chains (progress and developing countries)
  • Global food chains (GFC) as proportion of international trade
  • Grower-to-Consumer direct food sales (rise of farmer markets in most countries)
  • Internet speeds and mobile telephony (although coverage will continue to the patchy)
  • Land evictions in developing countries
  • Locavore advocacy, but not practices
  • On-line food purchasing (developed world)
  • Organic farming
  • Private sector agricultural industry research, development, and extension
  • Rise of online universities and vocational training institutions (across borders)
  • Rise of pluralism in international policy forums
  • Rising African agribusiness in response to early stage exploitation of its vast agronomic potential
  • Supply of ‘Ag industry-ready’ labour (all levels)
  • Traceability technology, although mostly backward integration types


What will remain the same?

  • A reconfiguring of agricultural faculties and vocational training institutions in response to rising demand for food and fibre (i.e. traditional models not filling skills gaps)
  • Branding of agricultural produce stalls due to lack of innovation
  • Basic industry bulk freight infrastructure
  • Food wastage
  • Foreign lobbyists activity by multi-national agribusiness firms in developing countries (already amongst highest in the world)
  • Government support for Ag R&D will continue to decline (as global shift to private sector continues). This poses major challenges for all countries Natural resource management investments
  • On-line food purchasing
  • Obesity Rates
  • Starvation (but more climate based than economic or political in causation).
  • Starvation may increase, but the world now responds more quickly
  • Trade barriers (patchy, pending roll out of more multi-lateral and bi-lateral agreementsgiven Brexit & Trump)
  • UN - slow progress against sustainable development goals
  • Wholesale food markets (Developing world)


What will decrease?

  • Bio-security (public sector funding cuts)
  • Business confidence (until global economic trends are stable)
  • Farm-gate margins (particularly in developed countries)
  • Food labelling (new disrupting technologies, Multi-lateral trade agreements impacts)
  • Fossil Fuel
  • Energy Costs (preceding fall in costs of renewable energy sources)
  • Global agricultural policies will temporarily slightly increase protectionism in response to rise of Global Food Chains (i.e. to protect in-country agribusiness)
  • Global supplies of P, N, & K (and some crucial trace elements)
  • Government transparency and accountability
  • High value agricultural lands
  • Profit margins at the farm gate (mostly in the developed world)
  • Public Sector Agricultural Industry Research, Development, and Extension
  • Wholesale food markets (Developed world)


Tags:  2017  Agribusiness Predictions 

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