This post is different from most of the agribusiness posts on this site, in that it was written for a professional/academic journal, in this case the Journal of Co-operative Studies. The purpose was to describe the diversity of co-operatives within New Zealand agribusiness.
The paper was written in late 2007, and published in 2008, but in most respects little has changed since that time. However, the co-operative company referred to in this paper as PPCS is now known as Silver Fern Farms, and readers of other agribusiness posts written by me will be aware that Fonterra is currently in the process of further modifying its capital structure.
I am aware that there is considerable interest internationally in our NZ business co-operatives and the legislation under which they operate. I am also aware that there is only limited understanding, even within NZ agribusiness, as to the range of co-operative structures that we have in this country.
In most business schools within New Zealand universities there is close to zero study of co-operatives, which is a remarkable omission given the role co-operatives play within our economy. Accordingly, I post the paper here in the hope that, although now two years old, it may be of interest to some readers.
diversity of NZ co-operatives