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Co-operatives in chains: institutional restructuring in the Dutch fruit and vegetables industry

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  • Bijman, W.J.J.
  • Hendrikse, G.W.J.

Abstract

Co-operatives play a major role in the agricultural and food industry. Co-operatives, by the very nature, are producer-oriented firms. As market conditions for food products have changed in recent decades, the question is raised whether co-operatives are still efficient organisations for carrying transaction with agrifood products? Bijman (2002) has addressed this question for the fresh produce industry in The Netherlands. Traditionally, fruits and vegetables were sold through auctions, organised by grower-owned co-operatives. In the 1990s several auction co-operatives merged, transformed into marketing co-operatives, and vertically integrated into wholesale. In addition, growers have set up many new bargaining associations and marketing co-operatives. These new co-operatives have started crop and variety specific marketing programmes. For reasons of asymmetric information and investment-related transaction costs several of the new co-operative firms have also included the wholesale function.

Suggested Citation

  • Bijman, W.J.J. & Hendrikse, G.W.J., 2003. "Co-operatives in chains: institutional restructuring in the Dutch fruit and vegetables industry," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2003-089-ORG, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
  • Handle: RePEc:ems:eureri:1064
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. George Hendrikse & Jos Bijman, 2002. "Ownership Structure in Agrifood Chains: The Marketing Cooperative," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 84(1), pages 104-119.
    2. Masten, Scott E & Meehan, James W, Jr & Snyder, Edward A, 1991. "The Costs of Organization," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(1), pages 1-25, Spring.
    3. Erin Anderson & David C. Schmittlein, 1984. "Integration of the Sales Force: An Empirical Examination," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(3), pages 385-395, Autumn.
    4. Barzel, Yoram, 1982. "Measurement Cost and the Organization of Markets," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(1), pages 27-48, April.
    5. Reynolds, Bruce J., 1997. "Decision-Making in Cooperatives With Diverse Member Interests," Research Reports 280001, United States Department of Agriculture, Rural Development.
    6. Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1991. "Multitask Principal-Agent Analyses: Incentive Contracts, Asset Ownership, and Job Design," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(0), pages 24-52, Special I.
    7. Steve McCorriston, 2002. "Why should imperfect competition matter to agricultural economists?," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 29(3), pages 349-371, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pérez Mesa, Juan & De Pablo Valenciano, Jaime(*), 2007. "Caracterización del comercio internacional de frutas y hortalizas en la Unión Europea/Characterization of Fruit and Vegetables Trade in the European Union," Estudios de Economia Aplicada, Estudios de Economia Aplicada, vol. 25, pages 619-642, Diciembre.
    2. Nikos Kalogeras & Joost M.E. Pennings & Ivo. A. van der Lans & Philip Garcia & Gert van Dijk, 2009. "Understanding heterogeneous preferences of cooperative members," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(1), pages 90-111.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    asset specificity; asymmetric information; auction; co-operatives; fresh produce; transaction cost;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L2 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior
    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
    • M - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics
    • M10 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - General

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