Digitalization in Austria’s agricultural sector

For centuries, Austria’s agriculture has served as the basis for the quality of life in rural areas and as the foundation of the country’s historical and cultural tradition[1]. In 2020, agriculture contributed around 1,1% of Austria’s GDP.[2] Despite the very small share of agricultural and forestry activities themselves in Austria’s gross value added, upstream and downstream economic sectors make a significant contribution to sales revenues and employment and thus represent important economic sectors for the country.[3].  In 2020, an average of 3.9 percent of the workforce in Austria was employed in agriculture[4].

Because non-wage labor costs are high in Austria, it is relatively expensive to hire workers. There is also a lack of well-trained personnel in many cases. For this reason, many companies are trying to automate work steps. Digitization has enormous potential in this regard[5]. Digitalization tools and concepts have been used in Austrian’s agriculture for some time[6]

Some key facts about the automatization of Austria’s agricultural sector:

  • 850 farms milk in Austria with automatic milking systems
  • Over 70% of Austrian agricultural businesses use the Internet for business management
  • 13% of Austria’s arable land are cultivated with GPS-controlled technology
  • Every 5th farm uses digital farm management systems for recording and documentation programs
  • 6% of farmers use precision farming systems
  • 3% of farms with <50 ha arable land and 21% with >50 ha arable land use precision farming systems[7]

The attitude of farmers toward Agriculture 4.0 is predominantly positive and, according to a survey, the farmers feel well informed[8].


[2] Statista:





[7] Rural Education Institute (Ländliches Fortbildungsinstitut) – Digitalisierung in der Land- und Forstwirtschaft


This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.  2021-1-BE01-KA220-VET-000035895

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