European Integration - together with the introduction of Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) instruments - has been the most important driving force behind dairy sector restructuring in Poland in the last decade. Transformations occurring after 1995 at the level of agricultural holdings covered not only the volume of production, but also influenced the importance of various marketing channels. The aim of the paper is to analyse the determinants of marketing channel choices made by producers and effects thereof on the financial situation of farms. The research allows for the assumption that changing the marketing channel from deliveries to the collection point (traditional channel) for direct milk connection at the farm (modern channel) positively affects the financial situation of the farms. The selection of a modern marketing channel seems to be conditioned by the exogenous rather than endogenous factors. Neither human capital nor households' initial physical assets are the decisive factors, It is rather the access to funds that would allow for undertaking necessary adjustments. The nature and specific conditions of the dairy sector in Poland provides better opportunity for the growth of smaller production units than in the countries characterised by a more concentrated production, where such farms would not be able to survive.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
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