BLW - Who are we ?
Federal Office for Agriculture (FOAG)
The FOAG is part of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAERF). Agroscope is the Swiss centre of excellence for agricultural research, and is affiliated with the FOAG.
The FOAG promotes multifunctional agriculture which makes a major contribution towards:
- ensuring the provision of adequate food for the population;
- maintaining natural resources and the rural landscape;
- maintaining a decentralised settlement pattern throughout the country.
In conjunction with the cantonal authorities and farmers' associations, the FOAG implements decisions taken by the electorate, the Swiss parliament and the government, and plays an active role in formulating agricultural policy.
The new law on agriculture, which came into force on January 1st 1999, provides a framework for sustainable development in the agricultural sector. In this respect, "sustainability" covers three aspects: the economy, the environment and social security.The state creates and reinforces the necessary basic conditions for the production of foodstuffs and their sale within Switzerland and abroad. It offers direct payments for services of benefit to the population as a whole, notably environmental, provided by the farmers.