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The Rapid Rise of Supermarkets in Central and Eastern Europe: Implications for the Agrifood Sector and Rural Development


  • Liesbeth Dries
  • Thomas Reardon
  • Johan F. M. Swinnen


During the 1990s transition period in Central and Eastern Europe, the retail sector was privatised and some domestic-capital supermarket chains gradually emerged. Massive inflows of foreign direct investment followed and competitive domestic investments drove a rapid take-off of large-format modern retail sector development from a tiny 'luxury' niche of around 5% of food retail in the mid-1990s to 40-50% by 2003 in 'firstwave' and 20-40% in 'second-wave' countries. In 'third-wave' countries like Russia, it is still only 10% but growing very fast. In most countries there is rapid multi-nationalisation and consolidation of the supermarket sector, with profound changes in procurement systems affecting the conditions facing farmers, and creating important opportunities and challenges. Copyright Overseas Development Institute, 2004.

Suggested Citation

  • Liesbeth Dries & Thomas Reardon & Johan F. M. Swinnen, 2004. "The Rapid Rise of Supermarkets in Central and Eastern Europe: Implications for the Agrifood Sector and Rural Development," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 22, pages 525-556, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:devpol:v:22:y:2004:i::p:525-556

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