Cooperative Movements in Rural Areas in Contemporary Poland: A Brief Comparison of Farmers’ Attitudes of Members and Non-memebrs of Coooperatives

Piotr Nowak 1 , Anna Jastrzębiec-Witowska 1  and Krzysztof Gorlach 1
  • 1 Jagiellonian University, Kraków, Poland

Abstract

In this paper the authors consider some issues concerning the problems of rural cooperatives in contemporary Poland. In the first part, the important role of cooperatives in agricultural changes as well as rural development has been stressed, especially as an opposition to neo-liberal tendencies in the food economy. In such a context, the authors would like to compare some opinions concerning cooperative movements presented by farmers who are members and non-members of cooperatives. The characteristics of respondents contain some information about their sex, age, level of education as well as ownership status, including also the size of the possessed farms. Moreover, the presentation of attitudes has been focussed on the issues of cooperation with other farmers as well as general trust in others. The issues of knowledge about cooperative ideas and contemporary cooperative movements have been taken into consideration. In the final part of the empirical analysis some opinions concerning major obstacles to the development of cooperative movements have been considered. To conclude the whole paper the authors stress some differences in opinions and attitudes between members and non-members of cooperatives. However, what seems to be even more important is that even farmers who are members of cooperatives lacked sufficient knowledge on issues that make cooperatives successful.

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