The consolidation phase: Survival strategies of farmers stabilizing and developing their businesses
In earlier studies, past succession is found to contribute positively to the farm growth. However, there is lack of information on how are the farms succeeding after the starting phase. In this study, it is analysed how farmers that have recently started their farm enterprise differ from more experienced farmers in some key farm management areas such as farm and farmer characteristics, strategic objectives and development plans. The data were collected by postal survey from Salo region in South-Western Finland. In the study, farmers are divided in to three different groups according to the farmer’s age and experience. According to the results, early phase farmers are in certain areas better equipped than older generations. They have better education and better networks than others. Moreover, the younger entrepreneurs consider their networks more important than their senior colleagues. Like expected, at early phase farmers had invested significantly more and have more liabilities than the others. In addition, the early phase farmers are the most active also for developing their farms. The late phase farmers were the least active, even if they were going to have succession within the next years. This might be problematic for the successor, too. However, in order to improve the viability of whole farming sector, the farms should be developed as continuum.
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- Ondersteijn, C. J. M. & Giesen, G. W. J. & Huirne, R. B. M., 2003. "Identification of farmer characteristics and farm strategies explaining changes in environmental management and environmental and economic performance of dairy farms," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 31-55, October.
- Christoph R. Weiss, 1999. "Farm Growth and Survival: Econometric Evidence for Individual Farms in Upper Austria," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(1), pages 103-116.
- Denise Diwisch & Peter Voithofer & Christoph Weiss, 2009. "Succession and firm growth: results from a non-parametric matching approach," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 32(1), pages 45-56, January.
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