Contract farming is primarily an agreement between farmers and buyers, with pros and cons on both sides.
Photo: Michael Zumstein/VU/laif

02.09.2019

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With globalisation and transformations of our agrifood systems, contract farming (CF) agreements between producers and buyers have gained prominence. But what is CF, and why is there growing interest in it? What is needed for it to be efficient, inclusive and responsible? What are the advantages and disadvantages for both sides? Our authors provide an overview and discuss these issues.

At the heart of contract farming (CF) is an agreement between farmers and buyers in which both parties agree in advance on the terms and conditions for the production and marketing of farm products, usually including the price to be paid, quantity and quality demanded and delivery dates. The contract may also include information on how the production will be carried out or if any inputs such as seeds and fertilisers, financial assistance and technical advice will be provided by the buyer.

CF has been developed and practised for decades.

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