Agricultural input supply and marketing cooperatives are an important part of North Dakota's agricultural economy. North Dakota agricultural cooperatives purchase and merchandise feed and food grains, maintain inventories of farm inputs, and provide specialized services. In 2004, 224 farm supply, agricultural processing, and grain handling cooperatives were present in the state (Coon and Leistritz 2005). These include independent local cooperatives and those affiliated with federated cooperatives. The objective of this research is to assess the financial performance of North Dakota agricultural input supply and grain handling cooperatives between 2002 and 2006. In section one, the characteristics of a cooperative business and how this relates to the financial benefits a cooperative provides are described. In section two, cooperative businesses features affecting financial performance are described. In section three, data and methods used in this analysis are presented. In section four, the results are presented and discussed. Section five presents concluding remarks. The results of this analysis suggest no statistical relationship between North Dakota agricultural cooperative profitability and business size. There were consistent differences in investment behavior between relatively profitable and less profitable agricultural input supply and grain handling cooperatives in North Dakota between 2002 and 2006.


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