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About this book
About this book
Entering the 21st century, the consumption of nutrient-rich foods such as meat, fruits, and vegetables is increasing due to economic growth in emerging countries. This increase has led to a growing demand for feed crops and a year-round supply of fresh fruits and vegetables. Because this demand is expected to increase, we need to understand the producers that will supply these agricultural products. Examples in Latin America can help us understand these producers. In recent years, South American countries such as Brazil and Argentina saw growth in the production and export of feed crops. At the same time, countries such as Mexico and Chile have been increasing their exports of fresh fruits and vegetables to North America, Europe, and Asia. The advantages of agriculture in Latin America include favorable land, climate, and labor conditions. In addition, we attribute the recent expansion of agricultural exports to external resource utilization. In this study, we analyze innovations in the strategies, structures, and management tools employed by producers to utilize external resources and expand their production.
Chapter 1 Reorganization of Small-scale Maize Producers in Mexico
Chapter 2 Labor Management for Export Fruit Production in Chile
Chapter 3 Transformation of Management and Labor Productivity in Chilean Agriculture
Chapter 5 Agricultural Credit for Working Capital in Brazil and Argentina
Today’s dietary lifestyles are truly abundant. We can purchase a wide variety of food from the supermarket year-round. Ready-to-eat food products line the shelves of convenience stores. We can enjoy satisfying meals at affordable prices at many franchise restaurants. This type of dietary abundance would not be possible without the food supply leaders who produce agricultural and livestock products around the world.
The authors consider the dynamically growing agricultural producers in Asia and Latin America to be the next generation of food supply leaders and described their stories in Evolution of Agricultural Management in Developing Countries (in Japanese, Institute of Developing Economies, March 2019). This present volume is the sequel to that book and focuses on the leaders in Latin America.
Large scale and export orientation are the most common features of agriculture in Latin America. I was overwhelmed by the extraordinary large-scale agriculture in the Brazilian Cerrado region, which I visited during my field study. This company owns multiple farms, each with tens of thousands of hectares in size, producing soybeans, corn, and cotton. After interviewing a manager at its headquarter in town, I took a light plane from the airport and landed on the airstrip inside the farm to have a look for myself. The fields stretched to the horizon. Other farm offices and silos surrounded by trees floated like islands beyond the fields. I wondered how they could manage such a large farm.
In Japan, small-scale farms are predominant. Many people believe that agricultural producers need to scale up to become more competitive. However, the idea that a more extensive scale increases competitiveness is not necessarily true. Size creates its own problems. A number of innovative efforts to overcome these problems lead to increased competitiveness. This book attempts to describe agricultural producers that are striving to be more competitive, focusing on large-scale producers in South America and small-scale producers in Mexico.
This book results from the research project “Global food suppliers in Latin America” at the Institute of Developing Economies in 2018–2019. Area studies specialists on Latin American agriculture wrote each chapter based on field studies. We would like to thank Professor UCHIYAMA Tomohiro from the Tokyo University of Agriculture, who explained to us research trends in new agricultural management in Japan and abroad. We also would like to thank Professor IIZUKA Michiko from the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies. She commented on our research result in the 57th national conventions of the Japan Society of Social Science on Latin America in November 2020. Additionally, we would like to express our gratitude to those who cooperated in our research in field studies in Japan, Mexico, Brazil, Chie, and other people who helped us publish this work.
This book is available for free as an e-book. Also, it is available through on-demand publishing. We hope that this book reaches students and business persons interested in Latin American agriculture. In addition, we hope that it will be a help for Japanese agricultural producers looking for hints to improve their farm management. Although Latin American agriculture is very different from Japanese agriculture, we can learn from the efforts and innovations in Latin America.
Please feel free to write to the editor if you have any questions or comments about this book.
SHIMIZU Tatsuya, Editor