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Food and the Mid-Level FarmRenewing an Agriculture of the Middle$
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Thomas A. Lyson, G. W. Stevenson, and Rick Welsh

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780262122993

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262122993.001.0001

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Cooperative Structure for the Middle: Mobilizing for Power and Identity

Cooperative Structure for the Middle: Mobilizing for Power and Identity

(p.37) 3 Cooperative Structure for the Middle: Mobilizing for Power and Identity
Food and the Mid-Level Farm

Thomas W. Gray

G. W. Stevenson

The MIT Press

This chapter focuses on the role of cooperative structures in addressing agriculture-of-the-middle agendas, as well as organizational advantages of the cooperatives and their effectiveness in empowering the farmers in combating the monopoly and oligopoly interests of the other agricultural bodies. It suggests a federated cooperative structure offering the heterarchy approach for agriculture-of-the-middle issues, as the structure in the past has been successful in competing with large organizations. The chapter presents several features of federated cooperative structure along with the advantages, including the accountability and transparency systems, which are useful in increasing food consumers. The importance of understanding and keeping an eye on the internal conflicts and tensions by any cooperative business is presented.

Keywords:   federated cooperative structure, monopoly, oligopoly, agriculture, heterarchy approach

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