Key steps and dynamics of family farm succession in marginal extensive livestock farming
Succession trends in agriculture have been downward in many European regions, especially in the less favoured and mountainous areas of southern Europe. This article aims at understanding family farm succession dynamics in extensive livestock farming of two marginal areas in Spain. We approached the issue applying a qualitative methodology based on inductive content analysis of open interviews with 28 farmers and relatives. The evidence shows that family farm succession is a long-term and multidimensional process during which successors pass through three stages: potential succession, willingness to succeed and effective succession. The factors determining succession can be classed into four dimensions that affect the succession stages differently. Individual and familial dimensions are found to include the most influential factors shaping the potential successor, whereas the influence of familial factors drops in favour of the individual dimension at the willingness stage. The contextual and institutional dimensions mainly influence the willingness and effective succession stages. The scope of policies should be broadened beyond effective succession by enhancing the intention of willing successors to take over the business.
Daniele Bertolozzi-Caredio, Isabel Bardaji, Isabeau Coopmans, Barbara Soriano, Alberto Garrido (2020). Key steps and dynamics of family farm succession in marginal extensive livestock farming, Journal of Rural Studies, 76, 131-141. ISSN 0743-0167.