Adaptation strategies for the Greek agricultural cooperatives during the economic crisis

https://doi.org/10.17221/22/2015-AGRICECONCitation:Kontogeorgos A., Chatzitheodoridis F., Loizou E. (2016): Adaptation strategies for the Greek agricultural cooperatives during the economic crisis. Agric. Econ. – Czech, 62: 26-34.
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Because of the Greek economic crisis, almost all businesses are facing difficult times with severe consequences for employment and the whole economy. Responding to the economic crisis, the companies cut off investments, wages and reduced personnel. However, the companies have to adapt their business strategies to cope with the crisis. This paper conducts a strategic assessment of the Greek agricultural cooperatives during the first half of 2013 using in-depth interviews with cooperative executives in order to illustrate how they have responded to the crisis and also to investigate their strategic options for the upcoming period. The results of the analysis show that agricultural cooperatives have chosen the retrenchment and cost-cutting strategies by restraining their activities while they appear eager to export their production. In addition, the cash shortage forced them to count exclusively on their members to finance any new economic activity. According to the cooperatives’ executives, their adaption strategies exclude abandoning the activities and selling the equipment and their real estate properties, while they involve exports, the experienced personnel and marketing investments. These results could provide helpful directions not only for the agricultural cooperatives’ management boards but also for the food industry businesses operating under a severe economic situation such as the present Greek economic crisis.
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