Analysis of Sustainability Performance of Different Farming Types Using Life Cycle Approach
Purpose: The article aims to present and discuss the results of environmental and economic analysis of the activities of the main production types of farms in Poland. Approach/Methodology/Design: The theoretical assumptions of the article concern environmental protection and the problem of shaping a low-carbon economy in the EU. In this context, it is presented how the production effects in the agricultural sector influence various types of environmental risks. The methodology of product life cycle analysis (LCA) and life cycle costing (LCC) were proposed for a comprehensive analysis of the impact of agricultural production on the environment and for the diagnosis of farm functioning according to sustainable development criteria. Findings: Based on the analyses carried out, differences in the environmental impact of different types of agricultural activities were found. The negative influence of farms with animal production was higher than that of farms with field crops type. In farms with animal production, different environmental impact areas were found between dairy farming and pig farming. The dairy farming had the strongest environmental impact through production processes. The acidification category turned out to be an important environmental problem in farms with livestock production. Practical Implications: The article brings a number of valuable information that can be a base material and a reference for further research, programs and studies for professionals - practitioners and scientists dealing with the environmental impact of agricultural production, its eco-efficiency, or more broadly ecology and sustainability. Originality/Value: The results of the analysis and theoretical considerations contained in this article complement existing research in the field of agricultural sustainability.