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Organizational and Operating Structures of a National Pork Producers Cooperative; Evaluation of Alternatives for Implementation of the Pork America "Umbrella" Model


  • Matson, James
  • Gehrke, Brad C.


This paper summarizes the structural components, activities and processes evaluated during the implementation of a national pork producers' cooperative. It reviews and compares various organizational structures considered and identifies the components, activities and processes that would best allow Pork America to fulfil its mission. The paper adds detail to the organizational structure of the "umbrella model" designed by the National Pork Producers Council Cooperative Task Force. More concretely, it outlines, evaluates, and compares alternative activities and processes to implement operations within that structure. It identifies strengths and weakness of each alternative, needs for internal and external competencies, potential business models, management scenarios, and financing options for the alternative approaches considered by Pork America. This approach supported the development of Pork America's master business plan. Governance and operational structures to allow Pork America to function successfully; incorporating local, state and regional groups as members; and be responsive to the restructuring occurring in the pork industry were described. The paper describes the essential components of each structure that was considered, including, but not limited to the following areas: (1) Relationships within operating units, among operating units, between a national headquarters and operating units, and between the board and management. (2) Groupings of employees into departments or operating divisions, within business units, and between business units and the scope of those operating divisions or business units. (3) Systems for communications, coordination, and integration among various divisions and units that make up Pork America, both vertically and horizontally. Methodologically this report is a descriptive case study of the Pork America Cooperative. It outlines the structure of the pork industry in which the cooperative is operating, and develops aspects of the New Generation Cooperative structure that are applicable to this cooperative. Furthermore, the paper identifies alternative activities and processes that Pork America considered or will be considering to implement this structure. Advantages and disadvantages of potential activities and processes are identified and compared. The organizational models discussed are based on those actually considered by the NPPC Task Force and the Pork America Board including: (1) a large-scale three-plant model; (2) a large-scale single-plant format, (3) a service company model, (4) a joint marketing model and (5) a national network model. The paper identifies the alternatives judged to best fulfill Pork America's objectives given the structural components implied in the umbrella model and the changing structure of the pork industry.

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  • Matson, James & Gehrke, Brad C., 2001. "Organizational and Operating Structures of a National Pork Producers Cooperative; Evaluation of Alternatives for Implementation of the Pork America "Umbrella" Model," 2001 Annual Meeting, October 30-31 31818, NCERA-194 Research on Cooperatives.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:nceron:31818

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Cook, Michael L. & Reardon, Thomas & Barrett, Christopher B. & Cacho, Joyce A., 1999. "Agroindustrialization In Emerging Markets: Overview And Strategic Context," International Food and Agribusiness Management Review, International Food and Agribusiness Management Association (IFAMA), vol. 2(03/04).
    2. Sexton, Richard J. & Iskow, Julie, 1988. "Factors Critical to the Success or Failure of Emerging Agricultural Cooperatives," Information Series 11921, University of California, Davis, Giannini Foundation.
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