A new vision for agriculture
momagri, movement for a world agricultural organization, is a think tank chaired by Christian Pèes.
It brings together, managers from the agricultural world and important people from external perspectives,
such as health, development, strategy and defense. Its objective is to promote regulation
of agricultural markets by creating new evaluation tools, such as economic models and indicators,
and by drawing up proposals for an agricultural and international food policy.
A look at the news

The agricultural cooperative, a profitable business model

December 2, 2013

The role of cooperatives in agriculture has been covered by numerous seminars and reports, and its key contribution has been outlined by international organizations such as the FAO, as well as by financial institutions such as the Rabobank Group.

Agricultural and agro-food cooperatives account for close to 40 percent of all cooperatives worldwide. In an increasingly more globalized and financialized world, uniting to produce and develop thus makes sense, not only for farmers but also for consumers. This fact will certainly be reiterated at the 2014 International Summit of Cooperatives to be held in Quebec City between October 6 and 9.

This past November 19, AgroParisTech, the CNRS and the INRA held “Conflicts and Territories”, the first seminar of the 2013-2014 season. The debates covered the problems of conflicts in the development and governance of territories, and thus addressed the issue of governance of agricultural cooperatives. Two university professors, Michael L. Cook from the University of Missouri in Columbia, MO, and Roger Spear from the Open University in the U.K., spoke and shed new light on the cooperative model as a profitable economic model with a social purpose.

The event also provided an opportunity to showcase American cooperatives, which have been expanding, quite contrary to predictions by some economists who mentioned their elimination due to the industrialization of agriculture. A total of 30,000 cooperatives have been identified in the United States, generating $652 billion in revenues and employing 2.1 million persons. In addition, these cooperative enterprises demonstrated their effectiveness by betting on collective marketing, where state intervention did not exist1.

At a time when agricultural markets are particularly unstable due to the gradual dismantling of regulation tools, farmers’ organizations and inter-professional associations are crucial to fight agricultural price volatility. Without being a substitute for the required regulation tools to fight agricultural price volatility, joining forces to grow, and thus improve market access, is a solution that has indeed shown its effectiveness.

1 momagri has recently published an article on this issue “The U.S. dairy industry is betting on collective marketing..,” that is available from: http://www.momagri.org/UK/a-look-at-the-news/The-U-S-dairy-industry-betting-on-collective-marketing%85_1301.html
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Paris, 16 December 2018