Ownership structure, supplier relations and sustainability in food chains

Project: PhD

Project Details


Sustainability is the key challenge for the agri-food sector; not only for farmers, but also for the companies that provide inputs to farmers and those that process and market the products. Cooperatives, investor-owned firms and family-owned firms have different ownership structures and different contractual relationships with farmers. Scholars have argued that the transition to a more sustainable society requires different coordination mechanisms, different contracting arrangements and different financial mechanisms. Current ownership structures and current supplier-buyer relations should be critically assessed in their ability to support the sustainability transition. This PhD thesis will study, both theoretically and empirically, the impact of different ownership structures and different supplier-buyer relations on their potential (and limits) to contribute to more sustainable food systems. Environmental, economic, and social sustainability will be measured at the level of the farm and the level of the processing/marketing firm. The results will serve the boards and managers of agribusiness firms, as well as farmers, to improve environmental sustainability throughout the agri-food chain.
Effective start/end date1/09/21 → …


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