Media library

Abstract: The main purpose of this work is to quantify energy consumption in the agri-food chain in Spain. The years 1960, 1985 and 2010 are analysed, giving an overview of the important changes that have occurred in the sector. Consumption of different forms of energy is estimated (final, primary, distinguishing between direct and indirect consumption and between renewables and non-renewables). The results show that consumption in the agri-food chain multiplied by 10.2 over the period studied, rising from 181 to 1,855 Petajoules. In a first phase, agriculture absorbed most of the new consumption but, since 1985, this stabilised and, since then, other phases of the chain (mainly transport and homes) have sustained total energy demand. Today, one out of every five final energy units consumed in Spain is consumed in the agri-food system (AFS). Transversal energy reduction policies which affect sectors such as agri-foods may be an efficient way of reducing total energy consumption in the country.