Production Network Analysis of integrated small scale farming businesses in Romania

Authors: Moritz Von Oppenkowski*, Philipps-Universit├Ąt Marburg, Tim Roesler, Researcher at Philipps-Universit├Ąt Marburg, Markus Hassler, Professor and supervisor of the PhD thesis
Topics: Rural Geography, Economic Geography, Agricultural Geography
Keywords: Romania, Subsistence Farming, GPN, Sustainable Agriculture, Post-Communist Economy, Integrated Farming
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/10/2018
Start / End Time: 4:40 PM / 6:20 PM
Room: Borgne Room, Sheraton, 3rd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

This paper examines, how and why integrated farming systems in Romania, which are ecologically and socially sustainable can and should be fostered. The United Nations Commission on Trade and Development stated in 2013, small scale farming systems are the only way, to feed the growing world population. Thus it seems critical that exactly these systems are passing at the moment. Which wheels must be turned to make these structures also economically viable? In the European context, the agrarian structure in the Romanian Carpathian Mountains is marked by small scale and subsistence farming, land grabbing, missing farm successors and informal structures. On the one hand, people are taking their milk with bikes to collection stations of big internationally acting processors from abroad and get barely acceptable prizes paid. On the other hand, the food produced there, is produced in non-certified but ecological integrated farming systems, using all residuals of the farm in almost closed circle agriculture. Dairy farms were the focus of the performed study as milk and dairy products mainly are the commodities, which are sold on the market and not only traded for other goods or workforce. By conducting interviews with farmers, local, regional and national politicians, NGO representatives, researchers, consultants, bank employees and processors it was possible to draw a holistic picture of the production network. Subsidy designs by asking the farmers for their opinion, problems in collaboration, infrastructural problems, illegal informal structures and pressure by international companies were discovered.

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