IT | A proposal for analysing the performance of agricultural processing cooperatives

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Tags: agri-food system, cooperation

C. Giacomini, D. Menozzi, M. Zuppiroli

Many studies have attempted to suggest indicators for measuring the performance of agricultural processing cooperative enterprises. Almost all of them have used the traditional balance sheet ratios, albeit adapting them to the specificity of the cooperative, in particular, measuring the gap between members’ remuneration, both in terms of product contributed and in terms of loans granted, compared to what might have been the estimate of the so-called “market price”. All these studies highlighted the poor capacity of the profit and loss accounts of agricultural processing cooperative enterprises to supply significant indicators of the performance of the cooperative enterprise, the economic efficiency of which is expressed, not by the income produced, but by the utility transferred to the members. Given the limits demonstrated by this kind of analysis, this study proposes to assess the efficiency of the cooperative enterprise, not only on the basis of the indicators internal to the management of the enterprise itself, but also using Freeman’s stakeholder theory and the social balance sheet. This approach seems to be more consistent with the nature of the cooperative company where internal stakeholders (management, ownership and employees) and primary stakeholders (suppliers, customers, current and potential competitors) are more strictly interconnected than in other types of companies.

In: R. Fanfani, E. Ricci Maccarini (2009). The role of cooperatives in the European agri-food system. p. 193-208, Bologna: Bononia University Press, ISBN/ISSN: 9788873955061.

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Created 23.05.12 Updated 23.05.12