1.2.3 Family Farming
In the case of family farming, the property and usage rights
are in the hands of the individual families. The management
and labour are carried out by the family that owns the farm
and, thus, are independent of larger social groups. This type
is found in Europe, in the European settlements as well as
in many other parts of the world.
Land is the integrating factor in this rural social system.
It is simuntaneously the basis of existence, production factor,
wealth, and home. In accordance with time honoured custom,
the land is not sold, but rather used and then passed on to
the next generation. The economic goal is to satisfy the economic
and social needs of all of the people living on the farm.
Being a long term goal that lasts for generations, farming
must he carried out in such a way so that the fertility of
the soil and the environment are net harmed.
There is a correlation between farm size and labour capacity.
The ideal situation is when the faun is only large enough
for the family re be able to carry out all of the work itself
while meeting all of its needs. If the farm size is adequate
and can satisfy these requirements, family fanning is a stable
system whose social stratification is limited and, therefore,
is especially suited for cooperative work. In this case, the
ecanemic performance is remarkable. A decrease fn the farm
size as a result of being distributed among the heirs or loss
through debts can endanger the system and sometimes leads
to a transition to a feudal agrarian system. By educating
and providing heirs who leave the farm with a start, the system
renders considerable benefits for other economic sectors.
In Europe as well as in some developing countries, the farms
their orientation towards the market, capitalization, and
ment of modern farming methods under the guidance of extension
This was accompanied by an increase in the size of the farms
as an effect
of the higher capitalization. Depending on the concomitant
this was connected with some of the farmers changing their
taking up jobs outside agriculture or merely losses of property
drop in social status. Since the latter is frequently the
result of mis-
management and the inability to adapt to changing conditions,
is sometimes made to take the key farm management decisions
away from the previous farm manager through a system of 'production
under supervision" and achieve better results by means
of central control. This can either be brought about by vertical
integration or coercion and is especially widespread in the
case of settlement projects.
As soon as an increased number of non-agricultural job opportunities
are available in a region, various types of sideline activities
and part-time farms crop up. In other words, one or several
members of the family take up a non agricultural occupation.
Modern commercial farms are a derivative of the traditional
family farm with a more commercial character. In the case
of market orientated, capital intensive family farms in Europe
and the developing countries, however, the difference between
commercial farms and family farming of a more peasant nature
is becoming increasingly smaller.