A characterization of Chilean farmers based on their market-production orientation
Chile's open trade policy, implemented during the last few decades, has greatly transformed Chilean farmers and their production systems. As a result, farmers can be grouped into three categories based on their market-production orientation: domestic, transitional or export producers. The objective of this paper is to analyze the factors underlying the decision to produce for a particular market and compare the three groups of farmers based on data from the 2007 agricultural census. A generalized ordered logit model was used to analyze different methods of production, and non-parametric methods were used to compare the groups. Results show that some farmers change categories in sequence; farmers that produce for the domestic market can later produce for the foreign market and eventually specialize further in the production of exports. The three types of farmers differ in several aspects. Beyond the indisputable role of geographic attributes and irrigation in producing exportable species, export-oriented producers have more modern characteristics than those producing for the internal market: they are more educated, have access to various financial resources, benefit from state-funded programs, have better managerial skills and are active users of technology.