FA8 High Nature Value (HNV) farmland

  This is a pressure (P) indicator. DPSIR = drivers, pressures, state, impact, responses. Moderate positive impact on biodiversity in the 20th century prior to 1990 (background). Moderate declining trend of positive impact since 1990 (arrow).
>> Background information



Characteristically High Nature Value (HNV) farmlands consist of small livestock farms and natural pastures. HNV areas tend to have a varying landscape structure which is capable of supporting diverse plant and animal species populations. The volume of HNV farmland is a European Union indicator for sustainable agriculture. Its area in Finland has been estimated since 2006.

In 2014 the share of HNV farmland was 8.7% fo all farmland in Finland. The share has been slowly decreasing over the past years. During 2006–2014 the HNV farmland area was reduced by 37 000 hectares.

The strongest decrease in HNV farmland has taken place in eastern and northern Finland. Nevertheless, the share of HNV farmland is still clearly higher there than in the western and southern parts of country. In western and southern Finland agriculture is more intensive and focused mainly on cultivating cereals. The highest share of HNV farmland is in the Åland Islands where there is markedly more natural pastureland than in mainland Finland. Åland Islands is the only area where the share of HNV farmland increased during 2006–2014.


Impact on biodiversity

This indicator shows indirectly the circumstances for species depending on animal husbandry and natural pastures. The decreasing trend of HNV farmland indicates that the production structure and land use practices in agriculture are becoming more and more unfavorable for many specialized farmland species. It is probable that the loss of high nature value farmland diminishes the species diversity of farmland areas in the long run.

This indicator is updated annually.  

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