We consider the choice of farm animal breeds for conservation programmes. Based on an analysis of past decisions in EU member countries to enter breeds into the conservation programmes of rural development plans and based on the results of an expert survey among breed societies and scientists, we find an inconsistency in the valuation of breed characteristics. Policy makers seem to be less concerned about considering true extinction risk and diversity and more about cultural values and about means to benefit a larger number of farmers for raising rare breeds.


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