Professional agricultural entrepreneur (Italian I.A.P. – Imprenditore Agricolo Professionale): qualification and criterion.

Professional agricultural entrepreneur (Italian I.A.P. – Imprenditore Agricolo Professionale): qualification and criterion.

Laws&Regulations Apr 07, 2020 No Comments
We would like to offer you a special section on this important character and on the legal framework related. Today the first piece on the qualification and on the criterion required by law. 

If you have decided to buy land and/or agricultural business, classic or into the wine sector, you might consider the interesting opportunity to purchase them as Professional agricultural entrepreneur (I.A.P.) benefitting therefore of a series of fiscal advantages. Let’s proceed one step at a time.


Pursuant to article 1 of the Law Decree of March,29th 2004 no. 99 with “dispositions regarding subjects and activities, company integrity and accounting simplification in agriculture, in accordance with Article 1 comma 2 letters d), f), g), l), ee), of the law 7th March 2003, n. 38:

a Professional agricultural entrepreneur (Imprenditore Agricolo Professionale – I.A.P.) is somebody who, being in possession of knowledge and professional competences pursuant to article 5 of the regulation (EC) no. 1257/1999 of the Council of  May, 17th 1999, dedicates to agricultural activities (listed in the article 2135 of the civil code), directly or as partner of a company, at least the 50% of his/her total work time and who earns from these activities at least 50% of his/her global work income.

N.B. pensions of every kind, cheques and similar, allowances and amounts made through performances of public offices, or in companies, associations and other entities working in the agricultural section, are excluded from the calculation of the global work income.


Law imposes the I.A.P.s the possession of adequate knowledge and competence in the agricultural field.

First of all, the individual income tax return has to prove a total income that, at least for the 50%, should be made through the above-mentioned farming activities.

If those activities are made in disadvantaged areas, as stated and identified in Art. 17 of the EC regulation 1271/1999, the share of income coming from the farming activity has to be of the 25% at least, compared to the eventual remaining share of incomes produced by the I.A.P.. For the percentage calculation of the declared taxable income for tax purposes, the last individual tax return presented through modello Unico, 730 or redditi PF will have to be used as reference excluding however what already explained into the previous NOTE from the calculation.

The same proportion 50% and 25% can be extended to the processing and activity time addressed to the farming activity.

I.A.P.s must have at least a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural or Forestal sciences, Veterinary Medicine, Animal Productions science, Food technologies, or a university degree in the same fields, or a Technical Institute Diplom with specialization in agricultural science.

Moreover, they will have to pursue the agricultural activity as the owner, co-owner, family coadjutant, administrator, farmer for at least three years before presenting the application for the qualification approval.

Furthermore, they will have to be in possession of a certificate of attendance with profit to professional agricultural training courses which have to be organized in Community, State or Regional Laws and where the number of attendance hours of the to the course changes according to the region.

As an alternative, they can present the degree obtained at the Agricultural Colleges.

In order to facilitate the corporate development in agriculture, the Italian D.lgs 99/2004 provided for the recognition of the I.A.P. STATUS to companies too. In this way, it overcame the previous regulation that limited this qualification to private individuals only. In addition to the already-mentioned criterionaffinchè and in order to let a company obtain the I.A.P. qualification, the following subjective criterion is required as well:

  • PRIVATELY HELD COMPANY: at least an associate has to have the I.A.P. qualification.
  • LIMITED PARTNERSHIP COMPANY: the managing partner has to have the I.A.P. qualification.
  • COOPERATIVE COMPANY: in addition to the manufacturing cooperatives, also the ones of occupancy are included if at least 1/5 of the associates have the I.A.P. qualification.
  • CAPITAL COMPANY: at least one administrator has to own the qualification.


In case of privately held companies and cooperatives, the activity done by the partners, if in presence of the criterion required by the law, is suitable to let them obtain the qualification of Imprenditori Agricoli Professionali.

  • PRIVATELY HELD COMPANY AND COOPERATIVE COMPANY: the qualification can be obtained in relation to the individual business activity and in relation to the activity done as a partner as long as the required criterion subsist. In the cooperatives, the recognition is made for working-partners too if, at the moment of the application for membership, the partner establishes the nature of the working relationship from which the classification will come from.
  • CAPITAL COMPANY: the qualification is earned by the managers who have to be not registered in the separated social security management.

Do not miss the second and last part of the section dedicated to the agricultural entrepreneurs and their related fiscal benefits.

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Marianna Gaiotto

International Sales Consultant - Great Estate Network

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