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The main purpose of this paper is to know farmer’s attitudes face to the agricultural production, the political support and the irrigation project of Alqueva in the context of the 2003 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) reform and the Health-Check, in a micro-region located near the Mediterranean Sea, in the Southern region of Portugal. At the same time, this paper also aims to understand the behavioural intentions of farmers face to the technological innovation and the future of the irrigation project in this political context. Results show that the majority of farmers are a relatively homogeneous cluster about their attitudes and behavioural intentions. These farmers still maintain a productivist mindset, a strong wish to maintain an agricultural focus and they strongly reject the notions of policy liberalisation. Although they have a great potential of innovation and being aware of the importance of their contribution in the protection of the rural environment, they recognize that the future CAP, the water supply irrigation price and the conditions of access to agricultural credit, could compromise their innovation capacity in the future. The conclusions suggest that it is necessary to understand the particularities of a regional agriculture in different countries in the European Union so the policies can take place successfully. In the Portuguese case, more comprehensive studies are necessary in order to find more consistent results.


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