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Abstract

Cooperatives are often thought to require open membership policies, use patronage-based financing, and employ decision-making based on unanimity. The objective is to measure whether large, as measured by dollar volume of assets and sales, cooperatives in the United States utilize practices which are embedded in cooperative principles. Consolidation in production agriculture is occurring in many countries in Western Europe and North America. Agricultural cooperatives, owned by farmers, are increasing in size globally. Governance systems are beginning to evolve as cooperatives get larger in size and compete across a larger geography. Some new cooperative structures are discussed in this article.

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