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Size of Membership and Survival Patterns of Producers’ Organizations in Agriculture—Social Aspects Based on Evidence from Poland

Aleksandra Chlebicka () and Michał Pietrzak ()
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Aleksandra Chlebicka: Faculty of Economic Sciences, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, 02-782 Warsaw, Poland
Michał Pietrzak: Faculty of Economic Sciences, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, 02-782 Warsaw, Poland

Sustainability, 2018, vol. 10, issue 7, 1-24

Abstract: Agricultural producer organizations are considered to be an efficient way for farmers to build up bargaining power, thereby increasing farmers’ incomes. While making a contribution to the research on the longevity of cooperatives, we tried to identify some regularities concerning the survival of these entities in the specific context of transition economies. In this paper, we look more closely at potential relationships between the development of producers’ organizations (POs) and the size of their membership. Then, we link the size of the membership with the concept of social capital. For our purposes, it is necessary to depart from using a general concept of social capital and to differentiate between bonding and bridging social capital. Our results, based on two unique datasets from Poland, clearly showed that relatively larger POs have higher rates of survival. This, in turn, is correlated with the stock and the type of social capital. The main contribution of the study is in identifying the relevance of the size of the membership of newly-established POs to their survival. The findings are followed by policy recommendations that may be useful in the context of promoting farmers’ cooperation in recognizing the low stock of social capital, specifically bridging social capital.

Keywords: producers’ organizations; survival; social capital; cooperation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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