Questionnaire to Food Losses of Fruit and Vegetables at Farm Level
Questionnaire Type: Carrot
Date, Hour, Interviewer name
Basic Information about the Farm
(Data processing will be anonymous, contact data used only for eventual additional questions)
Farm name, Name of farm manager, Address, Phone number, Email
Since when does the farm exist? (Year or Date)
Do you have a successor for the farm? Yes/No/Not yet defined
Agricultural Area in 2015
How much agricultural area is under cultivation in this farm? (ha)
How much is own land? (ha) Contract period for rented land? (years)
Do you exchange areas with other farmers?
What are reasons for land scarcity/competition for land in this area?
Type of Production
Organic: if yes, since when? Organic producer association:
Quality Management and Product Certification
Does your farm participate in any of the following certification schemes?
(QS-GAP, GLOBAL G.A.P., IFS Standard, regional production, other)
Labour (if possible, only count labour for carrot production)
Family labour including farm manager, permanent hired labour, seasonal hired labour
(Number full-time, number part-time)
Crops, Yield and Qualities in 2015
Which crops do you produce on which acreage? (ha/% of farm acreage)
Please consider area of double cropping e.g., for lettuce.
Please indicate also yields per ha for each crop (in kg, dt, t or pieces per ha)?
Please indicate units according to which figures are easier to obtain.
Crop: Vegetables open field production, thereof lettuce, thereof carrots, others,
Berries, Tree fruits, Arable crops, Fallow, Greening
Carrot Production, 2015 (and years before)
Please specify carrot production and intended marketing channel.
Seeding from calendar week (CW) to CW
Harvesting from CW to CW
2015 (ha, harvested quantity from field (dt/ha), share of harvested quantity that was sold (%)),
Ø years before (harvested quantity from field (dt/ha))
For carrots for fresh market:
- Washed carrots w/o leaves
- Carrot bunches with leaves
- Mixed bunches (carrots, leek and celery)
For carrots for industry:
- Juice production
Contract production: Mark if yes.
All carrot fields are irrigated? Irrigation technique?
On Farm Processing and Marketing
Which marketing channels do you use for carrots and for the other crops?
If relevant, please indicate also the specific quality.
Number of buyers?
Share of total production for carrots for fresh market/carrots for industry/others:
- Producer organisation
- Wholesale market
- Direct marketing to consumer (farmers shop, farmers market, etc.)
Packing Units for Marketing
In which packing units or packaging do you sell the carrots?
Share of production (%) fresh/industry:
- Trailer (without washing or sorting)
- As bulk goods in big bins
- As bulk goods in 20 kg crates
- To bulk consumers in 5 or 10 kg bags
- To consumers in 1, 2 or 3 kg boxes or bags
- As mixed vegetable bunches
- As bunches with leaves
- As carrots for animal fodder
On Farm Processing and Transport
Which processing steps take place on farm after harvest?
Which processing steps are performed further down the value chain? Please mark.
Processing step takes place on farm/not on farm:
Mechanical harvest (top lifting harvester/share lifting harvester)
Manual harvest (bundling of carrots with leaves)
Combining to mixed vegetable bundles
Transport to buyer (distance in km)
Do you also buy carrots from other farms and regions, in order to use processing facilities at full
capacity and to supply your buyers over a longer period? (Yes/No)
Own On-Farm Storage of Carrots
If your farm has storage and cooling facilities, please specify:
Which share of harvest is stored on farm? (%)
Capacity (t or m³), duration (days, weeks or months), storage losses (%):
- Fresh air storage
- Cool storage with controlled temperature
- Controlled atmosphere storage
Losses along the Value Chain and Reasons for Losses
In order to identify losses and reasons for losses in carrot production for the fresh market, we apply the following simplified scheme (Figure A1
). Losses are defined as the share of carrot production that cannot be marketed either on the fresh market, neither to the processing industry.
Simplified scheme of losses in carrot production.
Simplified scheme of losses in carrot production.
Up to consumption of fruits and vegetables by consumers, there are losses at the different steps of the value chain, e.g., (a) before harvest, due to weather conditions or plant diseases, (b) if the crop is not harvested because of insufficient market situation (c) due to quality requirements and
sorting losses (d) during processing, storage and transport.
According to your perceptions, when do most losses of carrots occur?
Losses in the value chain of carrots (%):
On the field before harvest
On farm: sorting, grading, washing
On farm: storage
Next step of value chain: sorting, grading
Next step of value chain: storage, transport
In the retail, storage, etc.
At consumer level
Please quantify the losses of carrots, that occur on your farm. Do you have a register of losses?
Types of Losses, Quantities and Reasons of Losses on your Farm in 2015
Are different production systems or technologies associated with different loss rates?
Losses are smaller than/equal/larger than/do not know:
Conventional vs. Organic
Fresh market vs. Processing
Carrots w/o leaves vs. Bunches with leaves
With irrigation vs. Without irrigation
Cultivation on dams vs. Without dams
Do rates of losses until harvest depend on production technology? (Yes/No)
If relevant, explain production technology.
Please state reasons if a share of carrots cannot be sold in the targeted marketing channel and
the intended quality. More than one reason can be stated.
Losses Pre-Harvest—Losses during Harvest—Losses Post-Harvest, 2015
Share of total production (%) before harvest, harvest and processing, post-harvest and storage:
Abiotic Factors, Weather
- Draught, Heat
- Hail, Wind, Strong rains
- Diseases, Weeds
- Non-compliance with Maximum Residue Level
- Oversize, Too small size
Mechanical Damages during Harvest, Sorting or Grading (broken carrots)
New Land and Quality of Carrots
What is the importance of new land, on which no carrots or similar crops have been cultivated?
for several years, or of a wide crop rotation for the successful cultivation of carrots with a good quality? Which are restrictions to implement such wide rotations?
Alternative Uses of Carrots that cannot be Sold in the Fresh Market
Please mark the relevant categories and if possible, estimate the respective quantity or share of
total production. State the price difference.
Quantity (%), Price-Markdown:
- Juice factory
- Production of mixed vegetable bundles
Disposal on the field (organic fertilizer). If yes, are there phytosanitary problems? (Yes/No)
Biogas plant (Own/Others). Are there legal restrictions? (Yes/No)
Fodder for animals (Own/Other farms)
Donation, food sharing or similar
Is there a cost of disposal? (€/unit)
Did you have problems in the disposal of harvest or sorting losses?
Which are the specific challenges?
Where and how do you store the wastes from sorting during winter?
Losses of Revenues due to Food Losses
Please consider the before-mentioned losses for 2015.
How much revenue were lost due to these losses?
Loss of revenue, loss of profits (€/carrot enterprise or %)
Please mark only one item of the 5 Likert scale from 5 “full agreement” to 1 “not at all agree”
“Since I don’t know the demand in advance, I cannot produce the exact amount that I can sell at
the end of the season. Therefore, I cannot avoid overproduction.”
“Since there is uncertainty of weather and growing conditions, I need to consider a risk
premium on the production quantity.”
“The requirements of the processing industry are too specific. Therefore I cannot sell those
carrots that are not apt for fresh market to the industry.”
“If quality norms for carrots were lower, there were less losses in the value chain.”
“Improved communication and exchange of information with partners downstream the value
chain could reduce losses.”
“If more carrots would be sold as quality 2, demand of carrots of quality 1 would be reduced. In
summary, this would not be profitable for my farm.”
What do you think about marketing actions in the food retail on “not perfect carrots”?
(1 kg bags for 0.69 €)?
Measures to Reduce Losses and Associated Costs
Are there measures (irrigation, cooling, calibration of harvesting machines, etc.) in order to reduce losses on your farm? (Yes/No)
If no, please state the most important reasons.
If yes, please estimate the costs for these measures.
Type of measure:
potential reduction of loss (%)
labour need (hours/ha)
investment costs (€)
operational costs (€/ha)
Which measures could be implemented on the other steps of the value chain, up to the consumer?