Suburban Sprawl and Market Segments Facing Supply Cooperatives

Cooperatives today face the challenge of dealing with a segmented customer base where customers in different segments have different needs. In particular, they face the challenge of how to serve different customer groups at the same time. Hobby farmers represent one market segment or group that is becoming increasingly important for farm supply cooperatives located near urban areas. This paper examines factors hobby farmers and traditional farmers value when dealing with a cooperative to identify how managers can better serve both customer segments. The results of a survey of customers of farm supply cooperatives along the front range region of Colorado are analyzed and presented in this paper. The most important factors for both groups of customers were price, quality, and timely delivery. The hobby farmer group also valued service factors like location, efficient service, hours of operation, and cleanliness. The results suggest agribusiness managers need to place greater emphasis on service components when targeting the hobby farmer group as compared with the traditional farmer group.

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Journal Article
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Journal of Cooperatives, Volume 15
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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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