Vertical coordination, producer response, and the locus of control over agricultural production decisions

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40 Scopus citations

Abstract

Structural change in U.S. agriculture in part has been characterized by shifts in control over agricultural production decisions from the farm-level to off-farm firms. In the past decade, this process has accelerated as increasing concentration in production and processing has led to increased vertical integration and contract production. To retain control, some farmers have formed bargaining units, have created production and marketing networks, and have petitioned subnational state governments for regulation of production contracts. Concurrently, there has been an impressive increase in alternative marketing outlets linked with smaller-scale production based on farm-level control over production decisions. Structural change and producer collective response has a long history in U.S. agriculture. Using Mooney's and Hunt's (1996) recent contribution on recurrent ideologies of agrarian social movements, this paper outlines recent structural changes and collective responses to those changes with reference to the shifting locus of control over agricultural production decisions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)491-507
Number of pages17
JournalRural Sociology
Volume62
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science

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