Entrepreneurial behaviour of dutch dairy farmers under a milk quota system: goals, objectives and attitudes
- ISSN: 0308521X
- DOI: 10.1016/j.agsy.2003.05.001
An empirical model, based on the Theory of Planned Behaviour, was developed to test the hypothesis that differences in farmers' goals, objectives and attitudes are a determinant of strategic and entrepreneurial behaviour and will, therefore, result in differences in farm size. The theory states that a person's behaviour results from his/her goals and intentions, attitudes, perceived behavioural control and social norms. Data (n=257) were gathered from a questionnaire that was sent to a selected group of Dutch dairy farmers, members of study-groups in the northern part of the Netherlands. Answers to statements about goals as well as statements related to attitudes, subjective norms and perceived behavioural control, explained 38% of the variance in farm size as expressed by farmers' milk quota. The goal of having a "large and modern farm" was positively correlated with farm size, while those related to "having a breeding farm" and "extra source of income" were significantly negatively correlated with farm size. A significant relationship was found between behaviour (farm size as expressed by a farm's milk quota) and goals and intentions of farmers. This relationship is even stronger when statements on attitudes, social norms and perceived behavioural control are included. Farm size is mainly explained by farmers' instrumental goals. This suggests that farm size is not relevant for fulfilling intrinsic, expressive and social goals. This research shows a consistency with the Theory of Planned Behaviour and can be used in empirical research by applying it to data collected in a questionnaire. Such psychological models on decision making can help to yield insight into aspects related to entrepreneurial behaviour of dairy farmers.