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Tunisian agriculture: Are small farms doomed to disappear?


  • Jouili, Mustapha


In Tunisia, small and medium-sized family farms dominate agriculture. From the early 80s, with the introduction of the Structural Adjustment Program (SAP), the conditions of production and reproduction of small farms have radically changed. In addition to the unfavorable trend of the prices, these farms are increasingly excluded from credit, land and support services. The ultimate consequence is a tendency in real incomes to decline, particularly sharp for small farms in the arid regions of the country. Faced with this degradation, small farms have developed mechanisms of adaptation or regulation allowing them to survive and, even in certain cases, to ensure more than a simple reproduction. But, it seems that the limits of these mechanisms of resistance have already reached or almost. All the indications suggest that the changes observed will lead the majority of these farmers to abandon their land and to undertake the path of proletarianization. However, other factors must be taken into account. The absence of any alternative of employment and stable income, in other activities, condemns small farms to remain in poverty and insecurity.

Suggested Citation

  • Jouili, Mustapha, 2009. "Tunisian agriculture: Are small farms doomed to disappear?," 111th Seminar, June 26-27, 2009, Canterbury, UK 52816, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eaa111:52816

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    Cited by:

    1. Finco, A. & Sargentoni, T. & Tramontano, A. & Bentivoglio, Deborah & Rasetti, M., 2013. "Economic Sustainability of Short Food Supply Chain in the Italian Olive Oil Sector: A Viable Alternative for Tunisian Agrofood Market?," 2013 AAAE Fourth International Conference, September 22-25, 2013, Hammamet, Tunisia 160681, African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE).

    More about this item


    agriculture; agricultural policy; small farms; Tunisia; Agricultural and Food Policy; Consumer/Household Economics; Q10; Q12; Q18;

    JEL classification:

    • Q10 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - General
    • Q12 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Micro Analysis of Farm Firms, Farm Households, and Farm Input Markets
    • Q18 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Policy; Food Policy

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