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Individual Farming in the New EU Member States: The Case of Hungary

Marian Rizov


This paper is motivated by the fact that (part-time) individual farming is commonly observed among rural households in a number of transition economies but it is not clear prima facie if such resource allocation is optimal. A conceptual model of household labor allocation between individual farming and off-farm wage employment is developed. The model explicitly accounts for the role of household endowments in labor allocation as the analysis is conditioned on the status of factor markets. The hypotheses are empirically tested using 1998 data from a country-representative survey of rural households in Hungary, an advanced transition country, which only recently became EU member state. Results provide evidence that capital market imperfections still remain. Implications for the policies related to agricultural sector restructuring, employment and rural development are discussed.

Keywords: households, individual farming, labor allocation, diversification, transition economies, international integration

JEL classification : D1, J2, P2, R2

Last updated 28 August 2014 by IIIS (Email).