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Excerpts from the report: Many individual farmers, as well as farmer groups, farm industries, and marketing firms are changing their methods of operation, seeking to make the most of rapidly advancing technology. Their adjustments are taking many forms. One important type of adjustment, aimed at better coordinating the functions of farm and farm industry, is contract farming, a prominent feature of the vertical integration of agriculture and business. A farmer whose operations are vertically integrated is one who shares some of his managerial decisions and risks in production and marketing with one or more related businesses--for instance, his supplier, processor, or distributor.


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