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Abstract

Over the last decades, the number of farms has decreased while average farm size has increased in industrialised countries. We investigate whether these two concomitant trends have resulted in higher farmland concentration or not in the case of France. Deriving Gini coefficients as a measure of concentration from the estimation of parametric Lorenz curves, we show that this is not systematically the case at the sub-national scale of “départements”. When studying the role of possible explanatory variables for farmland concentration, we find that milk quotas, CAP 2nd pillar subsidies and so-called structural measures (settlements and early retirement grants) have a significant impact. However, the availability and the price of agricultural land appear to be the most significant factors.

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