Agri-business refers to any business related to agricultural production. All aspects of farming and farming-related commercial activities may fall under the business activities of agri-business companies, from the production of crops and raw materials, processing and distribution, to sales and marketing.
The agri-business chain incorporates a variety of actors that all interact through a chain of activities. The farmer produces raw materials, crops and animals through a diversity of harvesting techniques, manufactures supply machinery and supplies to support farming activities, processers and distributors determine the best way to package and supply the finished product.
All parts of the agri-business chain do not directly interact with consumers, however, their activities are centered on operating in an efficient and cost-effective manner to provide goods to meet consumer needs. Consequently, consumer behavior and market forces have a significant impact upon the operations of the whole agri-business chain, as well as policies at a national and global level aimed at market and trade regulation.
Research at SLU interacts with different areas of agri-business activity, at different stages of the value chain. The research unit Agricultural and Food Economics at the Department for Economics contributes to understanding the connected challenges of adaption to sustainable agricultural practices to achieve the needs of the environment, animal welfare consumers. In contrast, the unit for Rural Development at the Department for Urban and Rural Development addresses some of the social and developmental issues within agricultural food chains.
Helena Hansson, Professor, Department of Economics
Linley Chiwona-Karltun, Associate Professor, Department of Urban and Rural Development