Meet the FABLE Germany team

The team is led by the University of Hamburg (UHH). The team’s main areas of interest have been in organic farming, land use modelling, sustainable development, and climate change impacts.

Models used by the team: FABLE Calculator.

Contact focal point

Livia Rasche

Livia Rasche

University of Hohenheim

Uwe A. Schneider

Uwe A. Schneider

University of Hamburg (UHH)

Livia Rasche

Jan Steinhauser


Transforming food and land-use systems in Germany

Germany has the largest population and economy in the European Union. Within its 357 thousand square meters, it is endowed with a variety of landscapes, such as mountains, lowlands, wetlands and wide plains crossed by the Danube, Elbe, and Rhine rivers. Germany also counts rich mineral resources as well as timber from its large forests which cover 32% of the land. Germany counts 16 national parks, over a hundred nature parks, as well as biosphere reserves. Biodiversity loss in Germany is due to intensive farming and forestry, pollutants, and land fragmentation, while climate change also impacts the local fauna and flora to some extent.

With a temperate climate, Germany is ideal for agriculture, devoting half its land to this sector that contributes to less than 1% of GDP. The production is diverse: cereals, sugar beets, fruits, vegetables, livestock, vineyards, etc., which are produced in different regions. However, the agricultural sector is responsible for almost 9% of the country's total emissions, which amounted to 62.4 million tonnes of CO2 equivalents in 2020.

To meet Germany's climate mitigation targets, the agricultural sector needs to undergo a sustainable transformation. Germany must reduce livestock numbers, improve animal welfare, increase the share of organic farming, and reduce consumption of animal products. Policies that promote agroecological practices such as crop rotation, cover cropping, and agroforestry can enhance soil health, biodiversity, and climate resilience.

Encouraging a shift towards plant-based diets is a lever for the sustainable transformation, and information campaigns, such as food labeling systems like the NutriScore and animal welfare labels, can help promote more sustainable food choices. These efforts represent an important starting point for moving towards a more sustainable food and land-use system in Germany.

Key national objectives and targets