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Differentiating farmers: opening the black box of private farming in post-Soviet states


  • Lee-Ann Sutherland



This paper addresses the question of farmer objectives associated with private farming in Eastern Europe. Drawing on qualitative interviews with private farmers in Bulgaria and southern Russia, the instrumental objectives of business development and job-replacement consistent with recent literature are demonstrated, but also intrinsic, social, and personal objectives, such as enjoyment of agricultural production, desire for independence, and proving oneself. These objectives are described in relation to associated farm size, investment practices, and succession plans, resulting in five idealized farming types which are similar in the two study states: agribusinessmen, primary farmers, pluriactive farmers, reluctant farmers, and minority horticulturalists. It is argued that differences in farming objectives have important implications for farming longevity and succession, opening up a research agenda for the study of private farming in post-Soviet states. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Suggested Citation

  • Lee-Ann Sutherland, 2010. "Differentiating farmers: opening the black box of private farming in post-Soviet states," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 27(3), pages 259-276, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:agrhuv:v:27:y:2010:i:3:p:259-276
    DOI: 10.1007/s10460-009-9212-y

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Paul Caskie, 2000. "Back to Basics: Household Food Production in Russia," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(2), pages 196-209.
    2. Trzeciak-Duval, Alexandra, 1999. "A Decade of Transition in Central and Eastern European Agriculture," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 26(3), pages 283-304, August.
    3. Mark Shucksmith & Vera Herrmann, 2002. "Future Changes in British Agriculture: Projecting Divergent Farm Household Behaviour," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(1), pages 37-50.
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    Cited by:

    1. Azer G. Efendiev & Pavel S. Sorokin & Maria A. Kozlova, 2014. "Transformations In The Rural Life In Russian Belgorod Region In 2000-2013 Through “Modernization” Theoretical Perspective: Increasing Material Well-Being, Growing Individualism And Persisting Pessimis," HSE Working papers WP BRP 56/SOC/2014, National Research University Higher School of Economics.


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