New Farm Structures in the FSU: Has Efficiency Begun to Change?

ZVI LERMAN

The Hebrew University, Department of Agricultural Economics and Management, Rehovot, Israel

Abstract

LERMAN, Z., 1999. New farm structures in the FSU: has efficiency begun to change? Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 5:236-246

The sharply dual structure of former socialist agriculture has begun to blur, and farming structures in the FSU today include a wide range of organizational forms with sizes ranging between the two traditional extremes of very large collectives and tiny household plots. The most striking achievements of reform include a sharp reduction in state ownship of land and a substantial increase in the share of individual farming structures created in the process of land reform have achieved higher productivity than traditional farms. Yet among the rural population, independent private farmers throughout the region appear to be more optimistic and economically better off than members of collective farm enterprises. This provides qualitative evidence of a positive impact of reform, as private farmers are at the leading edge of change, while rural residents who choose to remain in cillectives shirk exposure to reform and continue in a traditional framework.

Key words: farm structures, efficiency, socialist agriculture, FSU, sharp reduction