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Diversified Farms Facing the Covid-19 Pandemic: First Signals from Italian Case Studies


  • Luigi Mastronardi

    (Department of Economics, University of Molise, 86100 Campobasso, Italy)

  • Aurora Cavallo

    (Faculty of Economics, Universitas Mercatorum, 00186 Rome, Italy)

  • Luca Romagnoli

    (Department of Economics, University of Molise, 86100 Campobasso, Italy)


The paper focuses on the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on some Italian farms. In particular, the aim is to investigate the consequences of the health emergency on diversified farms, their reactions, and their agricultural and rural policy needs in order to overcome the crisis. The research path investigates five farms of central Italy through semi-structured interviews. The identified case studies are characterized by the heterogeneity of features and farms’ activities. These activities include agritourism, on-farm processing of plant and animal products (mainly olive oils, fruits, and cheese), bio-energy production, tastings and leisure activities, educational farms, and contracting of farm equipment. A qualitative–quantitative analysis based on textual analysis techniques, particularly content and sentiment analysis, was performed. The results highlight the importance of farm diversification and networks in farms’ strategies in dealing with the Covid-19 crisis. Furthermore, the presence of both synergies and trade-offs in different types of diversification is found. These results have interesting policy implications that should be more explicitly taken into account to target the next rural development measures.

Suggested Citation

  • Luigi Mastronardi & Aurora Cavallo & Luca Romagnoli, 2020. "Diversified Farms Facing the Covid-19 Pandemic: First Signals from Italian Case Studies," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 12(14), pages 1-12, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:12:y:2020:i:14:p:5709-:d:385092

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    5. Mastronardi, Luigi & Cavallo, Aurora & Romagnoli, Luca, 2022. "How did Italian diversified farms tackle Covid-19 pandemic first wave challenges?," Socio-Economic Planning Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 82(PA).
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